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U.S. opposes World Bank loan for SAfrica coal plant

WASHINGTON, April 8 (Reuters) - The United States said on Thursday it had abstained from supporting the World Bank’s $3.75 billion loan for a coal-fired plant being built by South African state utility Eskom, saying it was concerned with the environmental impact of the project.

“This reflects concerns about the climate impact of the project and its incompatibility with the World Bank’s commitment to be a leader in climate change mitigation and adaption,” the U.S. Treasury said in a statement.

The loan is expected to be approved regardless of U.S., Dutch and possible British opposition. Board decisions are arrived at through consensus among member countries rather than through voting, and countries can indicate opposition by abstaining from discussion of the issue. [nN08193538] (Reporting by Lesley Wroughton)