No takers in Sri Lanka for IFC’s US$ 150 mn loans?

The International Finance Corp.’s offer of US$ 150 million tsunami loan facility is likely to go a begging in Sri Lanka, as hoteliers seek comfort in local banks. The International Finance Corp.’s offer of US$ 150 million tsunami loan facility is likely to go a begging in Sri Lanka, as hoteliers seek comfort in local banks. IFC says they will clear requests on a priority basis, approving loans as quick as eight weeks for long-term rebuilding projects.

But due to IFC’s strict borrowing requirements, big hoteliers are finding it cheaper to tap local banks for funds.

Sri Lanka’s Central Bank is leading the tsunami lending schemes, stumping up Rs. 5 billion (US$ 50 million) in loans priced at six percent.

“We spoke to some of the bigger hoteliers who were affected and they were not too keen as it was cheaper to get funds from local banks. It was the smaller property owners that really needed funds, but we only fund mid to long-term big projects,” Sanjiva Senanayake, IFC’s Resident Representative for Sri Lanka/Maldives told LBO on Wednesday.

The Dec. 26 tsunami damaged the southern and eastern tourist belts and left Sri Lanka with a US$ 1.5 billion