IFC invests in Everbright Water to boost wastewater treatment in China

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IFC invests in Everbright Water to boost wastewater treatment in China

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, has agreed to invest US$35 million in China Everbright Water Limited, one of China's wastewater treatment firms.

The financing will be used to support the company's expansion, helping save freshwater and reduce pollution in China.

According to the agreement, Everbright Water will issue around 120 million new ordinary shares to IFC and Dalvey Asset Holding Ltd., a subsidiary of RRJ Capital's Master Fund II, through a private placement.

Chen Xiaoping, CEO of Everbright International, stated:

"The introduction of IFC and RRJ, two internationally well-known investment institutions, as the strategic investors, not only optimizes the shareholding structure of Everbright Water, but also strengthens and advances our future development. We are committed tothe best environmental, social, and corporate governance practices and would like to be a model of sustainable growth for other water companies in China."

China is facing a severe water shortage caused by its fast-growing economy, large population, and rapid urbanization. According an IFC study, the water supply-demand gap in China will reach about 200 billion tons a year by 2030.Water pollution, from sources such as domestic sewerage and livestock and poultry operations, is also a concern. In 2012, more than half the groundwater in nearly 200 cities was graded "bad" or "extremely bad," according to government statistics.

Simon Andrews, IFC's Country Manager for China, Korea, and Mongolia, commented:

"A robust water sector is crucial to China's sustainable urbanization, providing access to critical services and helping reduce pollution. We are keen to provide tailor-made financing and knowledge to industry leaders such as Everbright Water so they can make the sector more competitive and efficient."

With this investment, Everbright Water is expected to extend its service to one million new residential customers and treat additional 1,800 million tons of wastewater per year by 2018, through increasing its capacity in wastewater treatment, water re-use, and sewage treatment businesses. Everbright Water will also further raise discharge standards in the existing HanKore wastewater plants.

Singapore-listed, Everbright Water was formed through the merger of two leading Chinese wastewater operators, China Everbright International and HanKore Environment Tech Group Limited. Everbright Water currently owns 32 wastewater treatment plants, four reusable water projects, two waste-water resources heat pump projects, two completed Built and Transfer projects, a 56-kmpipeline network and 10 pump stations across China.

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