The Asian Development Bank headquarters in Manila, December 4, 2002. — AFP

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) Wednesday greenlighted a $250 million loan to help Pakistan drive sustainable investments in infrastructure and services through public-private partnerships (PPPs).

ADB’s Promoting Sustainable Public–Private Partnerships Program, a statement from the institution said, supports the implementation of government policies to create an enabling environment for fiscally affordable PPPs and promote inclusive economic growth.

“This program is part of our comprehensive and integrated package of public sector management support that balances the country’s fiscal consolidation and growth objectives,” said ADB Director General for Central and West Asia Yevgeniy Zhukov.

“The program will help the Government of Pakistan create an environment that is conducive to strategic, fiscally affordable PPPs that will bring the country closer to its development goals.”

ADB’s program supports reforms that will increase the absorptive capacity of PPP infrastructure investments by creating a more robust and integrated legal and institutional framework for public investment management and public financial management for PPPs.

The program supports the implementation of an integrated PPP policy. The reforms will facilitate efficient infrastructure planning and promote sustainable development practices in infrastructure projects, such as climate risk screening and gender considerations in project feasibility assessments and PPP contracts.

“Mobilising private finance through PPPs can help to bridge the financing gap in public sector infrastructure projects—which is vital,” said ADB Economist Sana Masood.

“This program will help ensure PPPs in Pakistan are structured correctly and implemented effectively in order to deliver more efficiency, innovation, and value for money.”

A $700,000 technical assistance grant is financing the program’s preparation and implementation. In December 2023, an additional $950,000 was approved by ADB to support PPP pipeline identification, capacity building, and sector strategy development.

Pakistan was a founding member of ADB. Since 1966, ADB has committed over $52 billion in public and private sector loans, grants, and other forms of financing to promote inclusive economic growth in Pakistan and improve the country’s infrastructure, energy and food security, transport networks, and social services.

ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.

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