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WASHINGTON, D.C., June 2—The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has approved US$42 million in loan and equity financing on its own account in PT Berlian Laju Tanker (BLT), one of the largest Indonesian shipping companies specializing in carrying oil products, asphalt, edible oils, chemicals and liquefied petroleum gas.
As an island-economy, Indonesia relies on efficient shipping services for domestic trade and trade with major markets in Asia. Expansion of the fleet will lower shipping and trade costs and improve competitiveness. The Indonesian economy will also benefit from the project's positive impact in decreasing the country's service deficit.
IFC's financing will enable the company to expand its fleet in the international and regional markets and reduce the age of the existing fleet. This is IFC's second shipping investment in Indonesia and its first internationally syndicated loan to an Indonesian shipping company to acquire vessels to be operated under the Indonesian flag.
"PT Berlian Laju Tanker has recognized expertise in transporting sophisticated liquid cargoes," said Mr. Declan J. Duff, Director of IFC's Telecommunications, Transportation and Utilities Department, which oversees investments in shipping in developing countries. "This investment underscores our support to the Indonesian government's recently announced liberalization measures for the shipping industry."
BLT, which primarily transports oil products, asphalt, edible oils, liquid bulk chemicals and liquefied petroleum gas, has a fleet of thirteen tankers and four harbor tugs. The expansion program includes the acquisition of ten newly built chemical tankers ranging from 6,500 to 9,000 DWT for domestic and regional shipments.
IFC's financing will include a loan of US$22 million for its own account, an equity investment of US$20 million and a syndicated loan of US$68 million, co-arranged by MeesPierson N.V., for participating international commercial banks.
IFC is a member of the World Bank Group and is the largest multilateral source of equity and loan financing for private sector projects in developing countries.
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