May 9, 2018 / 1:03 PM / 12 days ago

Brazil-China fund greenlights $2.4 bln in potential loans

RIO DE JANEIRO, MAY 9 (Reuters) - A fund administered by the Chinese and Brazilian governments has agreed to provide $2.4 billion in financing to five projects, pending approval from banks, Brazil’s Planning Ministry said on Wednesday.

The Brazil-China Cooperation Fund was launched in 2017 to push Chinese investment in Brazil by directing $20 billion in financing from state-owned Chinese and Brazilian banks.

The five projects, the first batch of initiatives to be considered, are applying for a total of $2.4 billion in preferential loans under the program, while a sixth project was rejected, the ministry said.

The ministry did not give details about the projects in energy, logistics, infrastructure and technology. They will now be evaluated by financial institutions before final approval.

As of January, the fund had received 29 proposals.

Chinese investment in Brazil surged last year, hitting a seven-year high of $20.9 billion, as the world’s most populous country looks to secure access to food and natural resources.

In the first four months of 2018, Chinese companies invested $1.3 billion in Brazil, up from $290 million in the same period a year prior, according to the ministry, which only accounts for deals in which the value is publicly disclosed. (Reporting by Jake Spring Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

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