Kathmandu, Nepal, July 18, 2012—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, is providing a $6.9 million loan to Buddha
Air to help the airline offer improved air travel connectivity in Nepal.
IFC’s loan will enable Buddha Air to
purchase a second ATR 72 aircraft, strengthening the company’s operations
in the country. Improved air services mean more options for tourists, and
better connectivity for Nepal’s population. The airline serves 10 domestic
“IFC’s second investment in Buddha
Air will help us consolidate our services in the region,” said Birendra
Basnet, Managing Director of Buddha Air.
Improving air travel is essential for
better domestic and international connectivity in Nepal because of the
country’s mountainous terrain. IFC provided a loan of $10 million in 2008
to Buddha Air to purchase two ATR-42 aircrafts and to construct a closed-door
hangar at the Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu.
“Addressing the huge demand for infrastructure
in Nepal is a strategic priority for IFC,” said Anita George, IFC’s Asia
Director for Infrastructure and Natural Resources. “Our repeat investment
in Buddha Air will help the company offer more travel options and reduce
travel time for the citizens of Nepal.”
Incorporated in Nepal in 1996, Buddha
Air operates domestic passenger flights between Kathmandu and Nepal’s
other regional airports. It also runs sightseeing flights to Mount Everest,
offering an onboard view of the world’s highest peak.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group
is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the
private sector. We help developing countries achieve sustainable growth
by financing investment, providing advisory services to businesses and
governments, and mobilizing capital in the international financial markets.
In fiscal 2011, amid economic uncertainty across the globe, we helped our
clients create jobs, strengthen environmental performance, and contribute
to their local communities—all while driving our investments to an all-time
high of nearly $19 billion. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.