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Business news

22 Jan 2016

Grodno Oblast to raise China’s loans for projects in industry, construction, healthcare

GRODNO, 22 January (BelTA) – Grodno Oblast plans to attract China’s loans for the implementation of projects in its industry, construction and healthcare, BelTA learnt from the Grodno Oblast Economy Committee.

Grodno Oblast is expected to implement three big investment projects with the help of China’s concessional credit line. The biggest one slated for implementation is in the chemical industry. A soft loan is sought for the construction of a new nitrogen facility in OAO Grodno Azot. The project is estimated at $1 billion. Resources will be needed starting from the second half of 2017.

The Ministry of Transport and Communications is ready to finance the reconstruction of the highway M6/E28 Minsk-Grodno-the border with Poland (Bruzgi) with the help of Chinese soft loans. This investment project will require over $200 million. The project was approved by the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus.

The group of pilot projects will also include an important social project for the region, which is a reconstruction of Grodno Hospital No.3 into an oblast cancer detection center.

The Grodno Oblast Executive Committee will suggest one more infrastructure project to be financed with the use of China’s soft loans. It is the reconstruction of the railway bridge into a road bridge over the Neman in Grodno. The project is estimated at $36 million.

The oblast will also work on the investment projects that may get financial support within the China commercial credit line ($4 billion) for Belarus. “There is a big number of contenders for China’s $1 billion commercial credit line (bank commercial loans). These loans with the interest rate of 6.5-7% per annum and an opportunity for a delay in payment are meant including for small and medium-sized companies. They will be granted by the Development Bank of Belarus and Belarusbank. At present there are four investment industrial projects meant for the implementation in the oblast. They are estimated to the total of over $120 million. Grodno Oblast also mulls over seven projects in small and medium-sized business which will require more than $48 million,” said Chairman of the Grodno Oblast Economy Committee Andrei Sviridov.

Grodnoenergo was the first to use these resources for the construction of a wind farm in Novogrudok District, he added.

China has provided Belarus with $8 billion of loans for the implementation of investment projects, including projects with soft and commercial loans as well as SMEs projects.

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