Business / Companies

Bank of China ready to finance Vietnam's infrastructure projects

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-11-03 17:07

HO CHI MINH CITY - The Bank of China has assured Vietnam that it is ready to finance infrastructure projects in the country, including those linked to Beijing's Belt and Road Initiative and Two Economic Corridors, One Belt projects.

In an interview with Xinhua, Wang Hao, director of the Bank of China's Ho Chi Minh City branch, said the bank's financing of Vietnamese projects is in line with its policy to contribute to the forging of closer ties between China and Vietnam.

Wang cited the 120-MW An Khanh I Thermoelectric Plant in Vietnam's northern Thai Nguyen province, which was opened last Oct 1, as typical of effective cooperation between Chinese and Vietnamese enterprises, as well as of the bank's policy of assisting Chinese firms with investments in Vietnam.

"At first, we were very worried, because in the past, some Chinese companies, especially those in the field of power development, were losing a lot of money. When we were nominated as An Khanh I project's loan agent, we felt great pressure," Wang said.

Wang said in December 2011, the Bank of China and Vietnam's An Khanh Electricity Joint-Stock Company signed in Hanoi the buyer credit syndication loan agreement.

"The project was implemented amid difficulties faced by the world's economy as well as the Vietnamese economy, so it received close attention by the two countries' leaders who gave timely instructions for its implementation," Wang said.

According to Wang, during the four years of implementing the project, the bank received "due attention" from the two governments as well as direct assistance from the Thai Nguyen People's Committee, the Chinese Embassy and the Chinese Consulate in Vietnam.

The Bank of China not only arranged and disbursed capital for the project, but also provided legal assistance and financial consultancy, using the bank's extensive networks of professionals and specialists.

Besides, the bank's domestic and overseas branches cooperated and coordinated well, thus effectively assisting relevant Chinese machine manufacturers and equipment makers, Wang said.

An Khanh I has two turbines with capacity of 60 MW each, and total investment of nearly $215.1 million. It is the biggest among four thermoelectric plants built in the country using Vietnamese private enterprises but a Chinese company as contractor.

The power plant has created 450 jobs for local people and has received a Labor Medal.

"The An Khanh I project is a success and it shows the importance of financing from the Bank of China in Vietnam's development. Certainly, because of this project, we are now known in Vietnam," Wang said, adding that the project has become a springboard for the bank's participation in four other big projects in Vietnam.

Wang said Bank of China has yet to sign a loan agreement for the financing of An Khanh II project, but added that they have already made preliminary discussions on the project.

Wang said the Bank of China is actively strengthening its financial assistance for infrastructure projects, especially on power and transport, in Vietnam.

"To deepen the China-Vietnam comprehensive, strategic and cooperative partnership, it is important to consider investment and trade as a foundation to boost the bilateral ties between the two countries, improve mutual trust and forge a win-win relationship," Wang said.

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