Financing Projects through the Capital Markets -- a South East Asia Perspective
Much excitement has been generated recently about the possibility of financing projects through the capital markets.
'Securitise your power station'
'144A your toll road'
'Finance your petrochemical plant through the capital markets'
But what does it all mean? Is this just 'hype' and bankers' jargon or can the massive funding requirements for the infrastructure projects required in the Peoples Republic of China (PRC) and Southeast Asia be met by some marvellous new financing technique?
The starting point we are told is that traditional funding methods cannot cope with the huge cost of meeting the infrastructure demands in the Asia Pacific region over the next period. A recent World Bank survey estimates the cost of new electric power projects alone in this region from 1995 to 1999 to be of the order of US$277 billion.1
Traditionally, projects have been funded by any one or a mix of funds provided by governments or supra-national bodies like the World Bank or the ADB, loans from Export Credit Agencies (ECAs), loans from commercial banks and equity financing.
The idea behind the move to 'securitisation' would be to open the capital debt markets for financing projects of this nature. Is this feasible? This Chapter examines some of the issues which need to be addressed in any proposed debt issue raised to finance projects. It also briefly examines how the capital markets are being used to raise equity for such projects.____________________