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Citigroup, BNP Among Banks Exploring $15 Billion Funding for Indian Ocean Project

Citigroup, BNP Among Banks Exploring $15 Billion Funding for Indian Ocean Project

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  • Citigroup Inc., BNP Paribas SA and Standard Chartered Plc are among the banks looking into providing financing for a new $15 billion program.
  • The banks, which also include HSBC Holdings Plc, Societe Generale SA and Rothschild & Co., have discussed funding possibilities in the form of bonds and so-called debt-for-nature swaps.
  • The initiative aims to protect 30% of the ocean area across the nations in the pact.

Citigroup (C), BNP Paribas, and Standard Chartered are considering financing a $15 billion program to protect Indian Ocean habitats, Bloomberg reported, citing Thomas Sberna of the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

HSBC Holdings (HSBC), Societe Generale, and Rothschild have also considered funding options such as bonds and debt-for-nature swaps for the initiative, the report said, adding that the debt-for-nature swaps will generate a fifth of the funding, according to Sberna, IUCN coastal and ocean resilience head for east and southern Africa.

The Indian Ocean project received its initial $100 million in funding from the IUCN, World Wide Fund for Nature, Irish Aid, Bloomberg Philanthropies, as well as agencies from the French and German governments.

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The report said an additional $200 million will be announced soon in the form of a so-called project preparation facility, but Sberna declined to identify the source of the funding.

HSBC is in discussions with groups like IUCN to explore providing capital support but is not currently involved in a specific transaction, an HSBC spokesperson told Bloomberg.

Spokespeople for other banks declined to comment on the initiative, according to the report.


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