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Citi sees social finance opportunities in Asia
Expanded focus to build on numerous current transactions across South, Southeast
The Asset 6 Sep 2023

With a focus on expanding social finance opportunities in Asia, Citi’s social finance team – a globally dedicated industry specialist group that provides expertise and supports client efforts to expand access to basic services for underserved populations – will be supported in its efforts by over 20 bankers from across the bank’s existing teams in the region.

The Asian-based supporting bankers will include those involved in country management and businesses in the bank’s markets of Vietnam, Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

Each country has dedicated social finance champions who partner with the businesses to develop pioneering programmes and debt solutions, including term debt, bonds, initial public offerings, securitizations and partnerships with development agencies and impact investors. 

“Citi is uniquely positioned to enable clients and partners to scale the delivery of products and services that improve the livelihoods of underserved and low-income communities across emerging markets,” says Jorge Rubio Nava, the bank’s global head of social finance. “The team will focus on solutions that improve the livelihoods of low-income communities. Asia is a market where we have a large and diverse pipeline across countries and sectors, including economic inclusion, healthcare, infrastructure, food security and education.”

The expanded focus on Asia will further support the bank’s growing work across social finance in the region in recent years, which has included:

  • financing a partnership to mobilize affordable housing loans for low- and middle-income populations in Indonesia
  • US$20 million funding to ASA Philippines to support its growth in microfinance to women entrepreneurs
  • enabling digital connectivity via Home Credit in the Philippines and Indonesia
  • financing farmers in India through a partnership with IndusInd that drives economic inclusion and food security.

The bank has also supported a pioneering social carbon offset-offtake transaction in Vietnam, enabling low-income households to access energy efficient cookstoves and water purifiers, while providing employment opportunities for women in rural communities.

These transactions will support the bank’s commitment to facilitate US$1 trillion in sustainable finance by 2030, while helping advance the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

These efforts in Asia will also contribute towards Citi’s global efforts to support economic progress for 15 million low-income households, including 10 million women, by 2025.

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