The Minister of Finance, Luis Caputo, signed this afternoon, together with the Regional Director for Argentina and Brazil at Agence Française de Développement (AFD), Philippe Orliange, the first loan agreement of the “Water and Sanitation Development Program” of Belgrano Plan for USD 70 million, 5.23% interest rate, 15-year period (5-year grace period). This is the first financing agreement between the AFD and Argentina.
This loan will serve as a complement to the USD 200-million financing contributed by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) for the above-mentioned Program, which is aimed at extending the coverage of potable water and sewage systems and at improving the environmental, sanitation and hygiene conditions through the management of water and sanitation providers of the Belgrano Plan region. The following officials attended the execution of the agreement: the Ambassador of France in Argentina, Pierre Henri Guignard; the Director of AFD in Argentina, Juliette Grudman; the Chief of Cabinet of the Ministry of Finance, Pablo Quirno; and the Undersecretary of International Financial Relations, Martin Soto.
This will enable to meet the Government’s targets as regards potable water and sanitation, which are aimed at reaching 100% potable water coverage and 75% sewage service coverage for 2019. In this sense, the loan will finance environmental, social, water and sanitation studies, as well as the strengthening of service providers and investment at a local level in infrastructure of potable water and sanitation. These projects will be executed within the Belgrano Plan area, which includes the Provinces of Catamarca, Chaco, Corrientes, Formosa, Jujuy, La Rioja, Misiones, Salta, Santiago del Estero and Tucuman.
The AFD had its first mission in Argentina in October 2016, when different projects were submitted to the investment sectors of the Agency. Since then, the Ministry of Finance has maintained a constant dialogue in order to make progress in the analysis and negotiation of the financing alternatives offered and to coordinate the technical missions of French experts in the country. For this reason, the AFD decided to establish an office in Argentina.
AFD is a financial institution and it provides technical and financing assistance both in developing and emerging countries and in the French overseas provinces. As a public organization, it depends on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development and on the Ministry of Finance of France.