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IFC agrees $87.5M loan for Vietnam, Lao tourism

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Hạ Long Marina project developed by BIM Land in Hạ Long City. Photo courtesy of BIM Group/Viet Nam News/ANN

IFC agrees $87.5M loan for Vietnam, Lao tourism

Bim Land Joint Stock Company, a property developer under BIM Group, has reached an agreement with the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, for a loan of up to $87.5 million to develop tourism infrastructure in Vietnam and Laos.

Tourism is one of the key growth drivers for both countries. Last year, Vietnam welcomed 15.5 million foreign visitors while Laos attracted about 4.2 million international arrivals, much lower compared to the 38 million foreigners visiting Thailand annually.

Both Vietnam and Laos have significant potential for further growth. One of their big challenges is the lack of quality accommodation facilities in tourist destinations.

“We value IFC’s extensive experience and expertise drawn from its global portfolio of tourism projects,” said BIM Land CEO Doan Quoc Huy.

“As part of this project, BIM Land will add a significant number of international quality hotel rooms or serviced apartments – more than 1,500 – in Vientiane, Halong Bay and Phu Quoc Island.

“Moreover, the project in Phu Quoc Island is expected to set new environmental and social standards in the property sector, attracting a new category of domestic and international tourists,” said Huy.

IFC will provide a loan of up to $50 million from its own account and a trust loan up to $37.5 million to BIM Land and its subsidiaries from the multi-investor Managed Co-Lending Portfolio Programme managed by IFC.

At least $10 million of this financing package will be offered to developing tourism in Laos.

The project is expected to create about 1,400 jobs – 60 per cent for women. Apart from local hiring and a relatively higher wage, the project will source around 90 per cent of its goods and services locally. IFC will also share best practices to help the company enhance its performance.

In addition, in pursuit of a green and sustainable tourism business, BIM Land has committed to applying IFC’s Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies Green Building Certification System in its new hotels to be developed under this project with the aim of reducing energy, water and material consumption by at least 20 per cent compared with similar buildings.

“The tourism industry is a major contributor to employment, foreign exchange earnings, and tax revenues for developing countries,” said IFC Country Manager for Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos Kyle Kelhofer.

“In alignment with the government’s efforts, IFC’s loan to BIM Land will help create higher skilled job opportunities for the local workforce in Laos and Vietnam, thereby strengthening supply chains, driving inclusive growth and enabling private sector participation.”

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