The UK Export Finance (UKEF) has agreed to provide a $285m (€241m) dual-tranched facility to NMS Infrastructure Limited (NMSI) for the construction of six new hospitals in Côte d’Ivoire, West Africa.

This facility was awarded through an export contract with the Côte d’Ivoire Ministry of Health and Public Hygiene.

The $385m (€326m) project will involve the design, construction and equipping of six hospitals which will be located in Bouaké, Boundiali, Katiola, Kouto, Minignan and Ouangolodougou.

Additionally, the project involves training and technical support upon completion.

Construction works are already underway, with completion expected in 2024.

The financing structure includes a combination of buyer credit and direct lending to the Government of Côte d’Ivoire.

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GKB Ventures (GKB), which was appointed as advisors to Côte d’Ivoire’s Ministry of Economy and Finance (MOF), completed the tender process for the financing of the project with a select group of international lenders.

MUFG Bank was finalised as the preferred lender and mandated lead arranger for financing of the project in the process.

Additionally, GKB advised MOF and NMSI throughout the tender, as well as for the execution and documentation process.

GKB Ventures managing director Ed Harkins said: “The tender process for the funding provided the Government of Cote D’Ivoire with full pricing transparency, competitive tension and full accountability.

“The highly competitive financing has been delivered in spite of an extremely volatile market. Being able to tap the OECD fixed rate at the lowest end of the curve was particularly important and is one of the lowest rates seen since the introduction of the OECD CIRR in 1993.

“This provision of UKEF direct lending significantly enhances the affordability of the project for the Borrower and provides certainty of funding to our client at a very attractive fixed rate.”