Proximar secures $66.1M ‘blue sustainability’ loan from Japanese banks
March 31, 2023 By Nestor Arellano
Norwegian aquaculture company Proximar Seafood AS has received a giant boost to its development of land-based recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) thanks to a ¥8.8 billion (US$66.1 million ) loan from Japan’s leading banks.
Mizuho Bank Ltd., The Shizuoka Bank, and Development Bank of Japan have released what is billed as the country’s “first blue sustainability loan” to Proximar, which is operating a RAS facility in in Oyama town at the foot of Mt. Fuji. Blue-sustainability loans specifically address Goal 14 (“Life below water”) of the United Nations Sustainability Development Goals to fund projects which promote marine conservation and sustainable fisheries.
“Signing this blue sustainability loan in Japan proves our strong commitment to sustainable fisheries, salmon farming and food supply, in addition to bringing us to our ~45 per cent debt ratio target at attractive terms,” said Joachim Nielsen, chief executive of Proximar Seafood.
Proximar has established its Blue Sustainability Finance Framework by complying with the Green Bond Principles, Social Bond Principles, Sustainability Bond Guidelines, Green Loan Principles, Social Loan Principles, Green Bond Guidelines, Social Bond Guidelines, Green Loan Guidelines, Blue Finance Guideline issued by the International Finance Corporation, and Sustainable Blue Economy Principles issued by the United Nations Environment Program Finance Initiative.
The proceeds of the loan will be used to fund the development of Proximar’s RAS for Atlantic salmon. The loan will be structured in two disbursements, where the first disbursement will be executed in April, and the second will come at the time of takeover of the post-smolt growout building in the third quarter of 2023. Mizuho Bank has been mandated as an arranger of the syndicated loan agreement which is issued by Mizuho, The Shizuoka Bank, and Development Bank of Japan, at an interest rate below five per cent.
“At Mizuho, we are strengthening our initiatives toward realizing a sustainable society, including responding to climate change and the transition to a low-carbon society, and we highly evaluate Proximar’s contribution and approach to the marine conservation. We therefore proposed to financially support their project through the use of a blue-sustainability loan”, a press release from Mizuho Bank said.
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