Mar 06, Colombo: The Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF) of the Korea Eximbank has committed USD 785 million assistance to Sri Lanka for development projects, the Chief Representative of the Korea Eximbank in Colombo Sung Soo Jung said.
Addressing a media briefing at the bank's office in Colombo Mr. Jung said in terms of the loan, amounts committed from EDCF, Sri Lanka is ranked at fifth place among all 54 eligible countries.
Out of the total EDCF commitment of USD 785.07 million for 29 development projects in Sri Lanka, USD 385 million has been allocated to the transportation sector. The second most prominent sector in terms of fund allocation is water and sanitation which is USD 205 million.
Describing the activities of the bank he added that Korea Eximbank operates Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF) entrusted by Ministry of Strategy and Finance of Korea, through which highly concessional bilateral loans are being provided to the Government of Sri Lanka as means of Official Development Assistance (ODA) and Korea Exim bank functions as an export credit agency to finance for international trade and overseas investment.
”With regard to our priority sectors identified by the Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) with Sri Lanka, we focus on supporting education, transportation, water management and sanitation as well as rural development. These sectors have been prioritized in line with Sri Lanka's national development plans, Korea's capacities and expected financial resources," Mr. Jung said.
Korea Eximbank approved its first EDCF ODA project for Sri Lanka in 1990, for the rehabilitation of the Colombo-Galle road. As of now, it has approved USD 785.07 million.
In addition to EDCF projects, Korea Eximbank as an export credit agency also provides financing for international trade and overseas investment, to promote bilateral economic cooperation. Since 1978, Korea Eximbank has provided USD 386 million both for trade between Sri Lanka and Korea and for Korean companies' foreign direct investments in Sri Lanka.
During President Sirisena's state visit to Korea in November 2017 to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the diplomatic ties between the two countries, a new EDCF Framework Arrangement was signed between the two countries increasing the earlier total EDCF funding amount of USD 300 million up to USD 500 million for the years 2017 and 2019.