News December 2023

We renew our vision with new energy

Dear colleagues, friends and allies, another year has come to an end. It has been 12 months since previous plans were realized and new challenges and goals were opened. I want to express my gratitude for your continued support because, without you, it would be impossible to lead an institution that makes a difference in the region. Together, we have demonstrated that transitioning to cleaner energy sources is unavoidable and bears fruit.

This is recently proven by the successful photovoltaic projects, Origo and oEnergy, in Brazil and Chile, respectively, financed through the Sustainable Infrastructure Debt Fund, launched in July 2023.

At CIFI, we see investment in infrastructure and energy as the route to economic and social growth opportunities, even in the most challenging times. Why? By investing in renewable energy and sustainable infrastructure projects, we are building a resilient path that provides thousands of citizens with better access to essential services and mitigates the effects of climate change.

At CIFI, we want to ensure the impact of our projects on society and the environment. We seek to reduce carbon emissions, promote social inclusion and ensure the long-term viability of our investments. That is why we recently approved a specific strategy to address climate change. This strategy is based on three pillars that underpin all our financing decisions: identification of climate risks, measurement of the carbon footprint, and progressive decarbonization of the portfolio.

Latin America and the Caribbean face structural challenges, from the infrastructure gap to social inequality and environmental damage. Investment in resilient and sustainable infrastructure will be critical to favorable growth.

The coming year holds exciting opportunities. We will continue investing in infrastructure projects and sectors such as renewable energy, telecommunications, and tourism, exploring innovative technologies and strengthening our strategy to address climate change.
The CIFI Sustainable Infrastructure Debt Fund has completed two renewable energy projects in Latin America.

In Brazil, the collaboration with Órigo Solar Energy has borne fruit in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul. With a financial injection of US$19 million, CIFI has promoted eight photovoltaic projects that promise a capacity of 25.7 MWp. This effort translates into an annual production of 51,049 MW of clean energy, a significant reduction of 30,113 tons of COe / year, and the benefit of access to clean energy for more than 19,500 people. This progress highlights the renewable energy potential in Brazil and sets a precedent for future investments in the region.
Simultaneously, oEnergy benefits from the Fund's entry by financing US$18.9 million of the total US$66 million for developing approximately 20 solar plants in Chile. This project is in addition to a previous financing of US$15 million from CIFI, reaffirming the institution's position as a pillar in the country's energy transition.

With these firm steps, CIFI reaffirms its position as a leader in financing sustainable infrastructure projects in Latin America, demonstrating that responsible investment and environmental progress can go hand in hand in the search for a brighter, greener future for all.

CIFI approves a climate change action strategy for infrastructure investments.

CIFI has consolidated its position in environmental sustainability with the development and approval of its Climate Change Strategy. This strategy stems from a detailed analysis of global trends and the urgent need to combat climate change, and its primary motivation is to align infrastructure financing operations with international climate objectives.

CIFI, with a deep understanding of its role in building a sustainable future, is committed through this strategy to supporting projects that are not only financially viable but also have a positive environmental impact. The strategy's objectives focus on promoting a transition to a low-carbon economy and implementing practices that contribute to climate resilience in Latin America and the Caribbean.

The strategy rests on two essential pillars: on the one hand, the meticulous assessment of climate risks in each project financed, thus ensuring responsible and sustainable investments. On the other hand, it seeks to align the investment portfolio with the goals of the Paris Agreement, emphasizing the importance of an energy transition and support for technologies and projects that reduce the carbon footprint.
CIFI launched its Climate Change Strategy
Carla Chízmar, Head of ESG at CIFI, explains that one of the significant challenges for financial institutions is the progressive decarbonization of their investment portfolio. However, CIFI has managed to reduce the carbon footprint of its investments by over 70% in the last five years, mobilizing private capital towards infrastructure projects with lower carbon emissions. Our strategy has paid off, and we are committed to aligning all our investments with the Paris Agreement and communicating our progress transparently.
CIFI launched its Climate Change Strategy
Through the Climate Change Strategy, CIFI reinforces its role as an agent of positive change in the financial sector and establishes itself as a strategic ally for those seeking to invest in developing sustainable infrastructure. CIFI demonstrates its leadership in transitioning to more sustainable practices in project finance, setting a clear course for conscious and responsible investment in the region.

CIFI launches innovative ESG app.

CIFI, committed to advancing the digital era and supporting the digitization of its business processes, has developed a revolutionary digital application for its project portfolio's environmental, social, and governance (ESG) management. This custom-designed application is a comprehensive, user-friendly tool that facilitates the completion of each step in the ESG processes during the investment in each project loan.

The app provides access to project data, including templates for mandatory environmental and social reporting. Key functionality includes:

  1. Initial Environmental and Social Assessment and categorization of projects. 
  2. Follow-up of the due diligence process. 
  3. Implementation of the Environmental and Social Action Plan. 
  4. Visualization of ESG impact and risk indicators.

In addition, it includes dashboards and detailed reports that improve efficiency in ESG project management, enabling rigorous monitoring and informed decision-making. 
This launch underscores CIFI's commitment to innovation and sustainability, marking a milestone in ESG management in the financial sector.

For more information, please get in touch with 

CIFI and the University of Texas culminate in a successful sustainability collaboration

Through the Longhorn Impact Fellowship (LIFT) program, CIFI collaborated with the Global Sustainability Leadership Institute at the University of Texas at Austin. This successful partnership connects outstanding students with companies to address real business challenges.

During the past semester, students Kelsey Nelson (Civil Engineering), Teagan Milford (Business Analytics), Sheera Wang (School of Business), Alison Lozano (Sustainability Studies/Governance) and Biyun Yuan (Business Analytics) joined our team as consultants. Under the guidance of Carla Chízmar, Director of ASG, these young talents worked on an exciting and strategic project: analyzing our clients's challenges and opportunities in accessing Carbon Markets and how CIFI can support them.

This project, now completed, achieved several significant objectives. We conducted a Green Portfolio Assessment, identified opportunities for Carbon Offset and Carbon Credit emissions, identified barriers to accessing these instruments, and provided recommendations for an accessible methodology for participation in Carbon Markets. In addition, we prepared a business model and webinar to highlight this initiative's economic and environmental benefits.

This collaboration with the University of Texas exemplifies how academia and industry can work together to make a positive impact. Furthermore, integrating these young talents into our team brought innovation and fresh energy and set a precedent for future collaborations.

For CIFI, it is an honor to have had the opportunity to accompany our client SIBA Energy thermoelectric power plant in the Dominican Republic at the vital moment of starting the expansion of the plant. These works are part of the second phase of the project led by EGE Haina S.A., which will add 70 megawatts to the electrical potential of the facility.

The plant in Boca Chica, Santo Domingo, is part of a Dominican government plan to produce up to 256 MW to complement current energy generation and meet the country's growing energy demand. Its construction required a private investment of US$350 million. At the time, SIBA Energy Corporation S.R.L. received financing from CIFI for US$73 million through the Free Closed Investment Fund for the Development of Dominican Infrastructure I, managed by AFI Universal. 

Today, we are pleased to see how we have contributed to the energy growth of the Dominican Republic.

Webinar: Driving Sustainable Infrastructure in Latin America

Webinar: Driving Sustainable Infrastructure in Latin America

CIFI and América Economía held the webinar "Sustainable Infrastructure: building a Future in Latin America and the Caribbean."

At the recent event, leading experts, including Javier Escorriola - Managing Partner at CIFI Asset Management; Maria Luisa Angeles - Chief of Planning and Strategy ESG Latam at KPMG; Cecilia Escalante - Transport Consultant at the World Bank, and Juan Pablo Noziglia - Investment Manager at Prima AFP, explored crucial issues related to sustainable infrastructure in Latin America.

The following summarizes the discussions and reflections shared during the event.

1. Sustainable Cities:
Sustainable infrastructure is gaining momentum in Latin America, although there is considerable room for progress. Javier, María Luisa and Cecilia addressed the benefits and advantages it offers cities and explored the path needed to gain more traction in the region, considering lessons learned from more developed countries.

2. Public-Private Synergies:
Juan Pablo and Maria Luisa led the conversation on synergies between the private and public sectors to drive sustainable infrastructure initiatives. They discussed the need to articulate collaboration between different actors and how these partnerships are critical to the success of long-term projects.

3. Role of Investment Funds:
Javier and Juan Pablo shared their perspectives on the crucial role of investment funds in developing sustainable infrastructure. They explored why to invest in these financial instruments and how they contribute to sustainable growth in the region.

4. ESG Standards:
Cecilia led the discussion on the minimum ESG (environment, social responsibility and corporate governance) standards that sustainable infrastructure projects must currently meet. Public scrutiny and stakeholder expectations in terms of socio-environmental commitments were addressed.

5. Future Challenges and Actions:
María Luisa, Javier, Juan Pablo and Cecilia explored Latin America's main challenges in promoting long-term sustainable infrastructure projects. They discussed actions and changes needed to overcome these challenges and move towards a more sustainable regional development.

The webinar provided a comprehensive overview of the various aspects of sustainable infrastructure in Latin America, and participants highlighted the importance of continuing these conversations to generate a significant impact on the region's future. 

We invite you to view the entire webinar here.

A glance at CIFI

César Cañedo-Argüelles, CEO of CIFI, participated as a guest on the Panamanian television program, Perfiles 360. The interview tells the genesis of CIFI and how

we are driving the energy and infrastructure transformation in Latin America and the Caribbean. 

Click and connect with the opportunities that are shaping the region!
Watch the interview here.

GRI Chile 2023: A look at infrastructure and energy trends

In recent days, government and private sector leaders specialized in infrastructure and energy gathered in Santiago, Chile, to participate in the GRI Infra & Energy 2023 event. In this key context, our Origination Manager, Nicolás Giancola, had the honor of attending and witnessing firsthand the discussions and perspectives of prominent leaders and executives in the field.

During this high-level meeting, there was a fruitful exchange of ideas related to developing, structuring and financing critical projects in the current landscape.

As a representative of our organization, Nicolas Giancola contributed to the collaborative environment and absorbed the valuable perspectives shared on the industry's challenges and the trends that will lead the way in the coming years.

This attendance strengthens our connection to the forefront of the industry but also reflects our continued commitment to innovation and excellence in infrastructure and energy project management.

Present at FELABAN's 57th Annual Meeting

César Cañedo-Argüelles - CEO of CIFI; Neila Urriola - Director of Treasury; Nicolas Giancola - Director of Origination, and Javier Escorriola - Managing Partner of CIFI AM participated in the 57th Annual Assembly

Assembly of FELABAN, the Latin American Federation of Banks, which was held in Miami, Florida, from November 3 to 6.

FELABAN's Annual Assembly is the most important financial industry event in Latin America. This year's edition brought together over 1,500 executives from banks, banking associations and other financial institutions throughout the region.

"Attending this event gives us an invaluable occasion to learn about the latest trends and strategies in the Latin American financial industry, as well as to establish links with other leaders in the sector and identify opportunities for collaboration," said Escorriola.

During the Assembly, the CIFI team participated in conferences and panels on topics relevant to the Latin American financial industry, such as digitalization, sustainability and financial inclusion.

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