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Infrastructure Fund

Overview

The Infrastructure Fund (IF) is a portfolio of blended finance projects and programmes. The IF is managed by Infrastructure South Africa (ISA) and operationalized by the Development Bank of South Africa (DBSA) through a “ring-fenced” division of the bank.

In fulfilling its mandate to look at a variety of blended finance instruments, the IF leverages on the expertise of the Infrastructure Fund Advisory Committee (IFSAC). The technical advisory body is composed of Public Sector (National Treasury, DPWI and ISA) and Private Sector members in order to enable key public / private stakeholders to make inputs into the financial structuring and to facilitate coordination with other government initiatives and policies. Once there is alignment with key stakeholders such as National Treasury and private sector capital sources, the products that can be deployed in the IF funding/financing structures can range from equity, quasi-equity, debt, guarantees, and stand-by facilities. Utilising the IF’s funding instruments to properly leverage private investment, will materially and positively alter the momentum of infrastructure investment, implementation and economic growth across South Africa. In addition, the involvement of the IF will contribute to the building of trust between government and business, and will strengthen business and investor confidence.

Infrastructure Fund milestones to date:

  • IF Group Executive appointed
  • Business plan approved
  • Formation of the Infrastructure Fund Advisory Committee
  • Recruited a team of 17 professionals with private/public sector skills and experience

Vision, Mission and Objectives

CONCEPTUALISATION

The Infrastructure Fund was announced by the President of the Republic of South Africa in 2018, as a part of South Africa’s economic stimulus and recovery plan. As an instrument for public sector infrastructure reform, the government committed to contribute R100 billion capitalised over ten (10) years to blended-finance public infrastructure projects and programmes. The aim of the Infrastructure Fund is to use committed government funding to leverage much higher levels of private sector investment in public infrastructure.

FORMATION

The Cabinet adopted the infrastructure delivery model underpinned by the new Infrastructure Fund, which is envisioned to fundamentally transform the approach to the rollout, building and implementation of infrastructure projects. The objective of the Infrastructure Fund approach is to alleviate South Africa’s fiscal pressure by mobilising commercial, international and institutional investment into public sector infrastructure projects. It should be noted that the Infrastructure Fund is guided by and must be in full compliance with the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) and other relevant legislation.

OPERATIONALISATION

The Memorandum of Agreement was signed in August 2020 between National Treasury, DBSA and ISA. Since the appointment of the Chief Investment Officer in December 2020, the IF has built a full team complement capacitated with professionals that have experience and expertise in infrastructure investment, financing, development and delivery; stemming from the private and public sector. During the first 6 months of operation the IF has compiled a promising portfolio of infrastructure projects that have good prospects of leveraging private sector capital if optimally blended with government funding.

GROWTH & IMPACT

The key opportunities of the IF are to help create a sustainable infrastructure development eco-system, accelerate and scale-up infrastructure development and implementation, and to create a space for private sector participation. The IF is in the unique position to approach Development Finance Institutions, Multilateral Development Banks and sovereign donors for co-funding, as well as structuring instruments that may be of interest to institutional investors such as pension funds and private or commercial investors or lenders.

Infrastructure Fund Project Pipeline

The IF Project Pipeline is a promising portfolio of infrastructure projects that have good prospects of leveraging private sector capital if optimally blended with government funding. In May/June 2021, a number of programmes/ projects in the IF Pipeline were submitted to the BFI for consideration. 

These programme/project focus areas include:

  • Student Housing
  • Water & Sanitation
  • Social Housing
  • Digital