AIIB okays $680m for first four projects
BEIJING • The board of China-backed Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) approved US$509 million (S$680 million) in investments for its first four projects yesterday.
Three of the four projects are co-financed with the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, United Kingdom Department for International Development and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.
The projects, announced previously, are power grid upgrades in Bangladesh, slum renovation in Indonesia and highway construction in Pakistan and Tajikistan.
AIIB was proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping two years ago and began operations in January. It counts 57 founding member countries and US$100 billion in committed capital.
ECB okays $606b in super-cheap loans
FRANKFURT • The European Central Bank's allotted €399.3 billion (S$606 billion) in its initial round of super-cheap loans yesterday, at the lower end of expectations and confirming that euro zone banks are not in great need of additional financing.
Unveiled in March as a potent tool to aid the bloc's modest credit recovery, the four-year Targeted Long-Term Financing Operations aim to lower corporate borrowing costs to induce spending and ultimately revive inflation.
Offered initially at a zero per cent interest rate, banks could be paid up to 0.4 per cent of what they borrow by the ECB if they meet targets for lending out cash to the real economy.