Cambodia: Financial Intermediaries 01-03
Social and Environmental Impacts
IFC has an active equity investment with An Binh Commercial Joint Stock Bank (ABBank). Specifically, a $50 million quasi-equity and $25 million A loan through an IFC project (no. 29745). The project proposes to forge a long-term partnership between IFC and ABBank by providing long term financing to the bank, both structured as senior and convertible debt instruments. According to IFC, its investment aims to allow the bank to maintain a healthy capital adequacy ratio while growing its loan portfolio. The loan will be geared towards supporting climate change initiatives and enhancing financing for eligible energy efficiency and cleaner production projects. The complainants have also alleged that IFC is exposed to the project via another IFC banking client in the region.
In June 2018, CAO received a complaint regarding IFC Financial Intermediary clients, ABBank and another IFC banking client in the region—in relation to a range of social and environmental impacts regarding the Lower Se San Dam 2 project in Cambodia. These include concerns related to community resettlement, impacts on livelihoods, threats against community members opposing the project, damage to socioculturally significant sites such as ancestral graves and spiritual forests, and impacts on the fish population of the Mekong, Sesan, and Srepok Basins. The complainants have alleged that IFC is exposed to the project via another IFC banking client in the region.
CAO found the complaint to be eligible for further assessment in July 2018 and began an assessment. The assessment period was extended several times, due to the need to establish contact with additional stakeholders whose views were deemed relevant, and also due to challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic and travel restrictions after March 2020.
After an initial extension to the assessment period to January 2021, CAO extended the assessment again through January 2022 in order to ensure that the potential for dispute resolution was fully explored with all parties concerned. Ultimately, the parties did not reach a consensus to participate in a dispute resolution process. Details from the assessment are available in reports in English and Khmer, accessible via the “Case Documents” section below this page. Based on CAO Policy, the case was then transferred to CAO’s Compliance team in July 2022 for appraisal. The compliance appraisal process will determine whether further investigation of IFC’s environmental and social performance is warranted or not.
CAO is now conducting a Compliance appraisal of this case.
Status as of July 6, 2022