IFC Partners with Commercial Bank of Ceylon to Improve Access to Green Financing in Sri Lanka

Colombo, Sri Lanka, July 25, 2017—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is partnering with Sri Lanka’s Commercial Bank of Ceylon (CBC) to help the bank increase investments in local companies focusing on renewable energy and energy-efficiency projects.

IFC will help Commercial Bank develop a green-finance business—an emerging field in which banks provide credit to support a broad range of projects covering energy efficiency and renewable energy, cleaner production, green buildings, and resource efficiency, among others.

“There is substantial untapped potential in Sri Lanka for investments in green-energy projects,” said Jegan Durairatnam, Managing Director of Commercial Bank. “This work is part of our broader strategy to help clients mitigate climate-change risks and contribute to a cleaner, more sustainable environment.”

While Sri Lanka is a country with high electrification coverage, up to 70 percent of the country’s power requirement is met by thermal power. Tapping into increasingly feasible renewable-energy sources will help minimize overdependence on fossil fuel sources.

“We continue to strengthen our partnership with Commercial Bank as we partner with them on an initiative to build their green-finance portfolio,” said Amena Arif, IFC Country Manager for Sri Lanka and Maldives. “Investments in energy and resource efficiency are not just good for the environment, they are also good for business since they help reduce energy consumption, drive down costs, and make businesses more competitive.”

IFC’s Green-Finance Program is a global program that aims to increase private sector investments in green projects, including energy efficiency and renewable energy, by increasing banks’ capacities and confidence to lend to green projects through investment and advisory support. Over the last 15 years, IFC has worked with more than 125 financial institutions in 35 countries, to provide over $20 billion of private sector financing.

Commercial Bank has been in the forefront of promoting green finance facilities and offers special terms for both businesses and consumers on investments made on green projects.

Sri Lanka is a priority country for IFC. IFC’s committed portfolio in Sri Lanka covers projects across a range of sectors, including infrastructure, tourism, renewable energy, finance, and healthcare. IFC also provides advisory services to promote sustainable growth among small and medium enterprises by facilitating access to finance and by offering capacity-building and training opportunities.

About Commercial Bank of Ceylon

Sri Lanka’s largest and most profitable private bank, Commercial Bank of Ceylon has assets in excess of Sri Lankan Rupees 1 trillion and accounts for 4.31 percent of the total market capitalization of the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) with a market capitalization of Rupees.118 billion at the end of 2016. The Bank is the largest lender in Sri Lanka to SMEs, having disbursed Rupees 952 billion to the sector over the past five years, and channels 17.82 percent of the country’s export volumes and 8.36 percent of its import volumes. Commercial Bank’s overseas operations encompass Bangladesh, Myanmar, Maldives, and Italy.

About IFC

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. Working with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, we use our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in the toughest areas of the world. In FY16, we delivered a record $19 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to help end poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit www.ifc.org