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November 30, 2020
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Kenyan fund targets Sh1.5 billion green bond for water projects

A non-profit organisation plans to issue a Sh1.5 billion ($15 million) bond this year to fund Kenyan water utilities.
Robert Bunyi, chief Executive Officer of the Kenya
Pooled Water Fund, says that it aims to launch a
15-year instrument and to have it certified as a green
bond.
Like other African nations, Kenya requires billions of
dollars in the coming years to invest in infrastructure projects like roads, water and irrigation, railways and power generation.
Proceeds from green bonds help finance projects
in renewable energy, green transport, energy-efficiency and wastewater treatment.
“We want to issue the bond in the second half of the
year,” Bunyi told Reuters, adding the bond could
come in October after it had secured regulatory
approval. It will be targeted at Kenyan institutional investors
such as pension funds and insurance companies and
five to Sh10 billion could be raised from such bonds
each year, Bunyi said.
Kenya’s government has stepped up borrowing in
recent years to invest in such projects, prompting
criticism from anti-debt campaigners and markets.
Officials have pledged to cut borrowing and rely on
private investors for future infrastructure projects.
In its 2018/19 ( July-June) budget, Kenya allocated
Sh28.23 billion to water and sewerage infrastructure development, and the figure is expected to be
Sh28.40 billion in the 2019/20 financial year.
Kenya Pooled Water Fund is a collaboration between
the Kenyan and Dutch governments. It also gets
support from the Swedish aid agency SIDA, the World
Bank, United Kingdom’s DfID and the United States
Aid Agency USAid.
  The fund was formally registered in November 2018,
but it had been working on the bond plan for three
years, Bunyi said, adding that once it takes off in
Kenya, it will be replicated elsewhere.

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