Norfund invests in green infrastructure to improve essential infrastructure services.
Green Infrastructure is Norfund’s newest investment area. These investments contribute to sustainable development of cities and towns, reduce environmental harm and improve people’s standards of living.
waste recycled in developing countries
of world population will live in cities by 2030
Why invest in green infrastructure?
The number of people living within cities is projected to rise to 5 billion people by 2030. Common urban challenges include congestion, insufficient basic services such as electricity and water and sanitation shortages of adequate housing, declining infrastructure and rising air pollution.
Today, 883 million people worldwide live in slums. Urbanization challenges can be overcome in ways that allow cities to continue to thrive and grow, while improving resource use and reducing pollution and poverty. Investments in projects or private companies in the waste management sector support in allowing for continued growth.
Considering that not having access to water would mean a certain death and that almost everyone has such access, 76% of the population in Sub-Saharan Africa lack access to clean water and 72% have no basic sanitation facilities. 80% of illnesses in developing countries are related to poor water and sanitation conditions and half of the world’s hospital beds are filled with people suffering from water-related diseases. A dollar invested into water is estimated to generate four dollars societal return, through increased productivity, decreased sickness, increased school attendance and more. However water is in many countries regarded as a human right and large-scale projects requiring secured off-take agreements and long-term contracts therefore struggle reaching bankability due to limited secured revenues. Norfund plays an important role in being a front-runner in markets and sectors where other investors hesitate to invest.
In our strategy 2023-2026, our defined ambitions are:
- 50 million m3 water and wastewater treatment capacity enabled
- 20,000 tons of waste treatment capacity enabled
Green Infrastructure’s aim is to improve essential infrastructure services in:
- Waste management, including waste-to-energy
- Water supply and sanitation, including waste-water treatment
The priority is direct investments in Sub-Saharan Africa, South and Southeast Asia, however investments into funds is also explored to gain access to otherwise difficult markets or to build experience and network.
Investments in this sector requires strong technology and market knowledge to identify commercially viable projects in sectors of limited maturity.
Norfund therefore prefers to invest in collaboration with experienced industry partners who are able to transfer best practices to investee companies. Local or regional smaller players are also considered.
What we offer
Norfund is an active minority investor. We offer risk capital through equity, loans and funds to companies that meet our requirements.
To maximize commercial and developmental success, Norfund strives to be a value adding owner beyond the capital investment. Norfund’s investment teams have extensive experience in project development and governance and work closely with partners to develop companies. Norfund takes a position as an active owner and requires a board seat in equity investments. With more than 20 years’ experience of investing in developing countries, Norfund continuously builds and develops the expertise needed to invest and manage risks in order to succeed as an investor.
Norfund invests with or via partners to benefit from their knowledge and expertise. We often prefer to partner with large, well-known and respected companies with a local presence and a long-term horizon, whose interests align with those of Norfund.