Thailand - Country Commercial Guide
Project Financing

Includes how major projects are financed and gives examples where relevant. Explains activities of the multilateral development banks in and other aid-funded projects where procurement is open to U.S. bidders.

Last published date: 2019-10-13

U.S. EXPORT-IMPORT BANK (EX-IM):  The U.S. Ex-Im Bank established its Project Finance Division in June 1994. As developing nations turn away from sovereign-guaranteed borrowing, the Bank’s project financing program will assist U.S. exporters to compete in new international growth industries such as the development of private power plants and other infrastructure projects.  While such a financing structure has been used successfully in the past for oil and gas, mining, and power projects, the move toward “privatization” by sovereign entities has created new opportunities for U.S. exporters in telecommunication, transportation and other sectors. 

The Ex-Im Bank offers short-, medium-, and long-term programs to support U.S. exports to Thailand.  The Ex-Im Bank’s short-term export credit insurance program will provide for the financing of exports or consumer goods, spare parts, raw materials (on terms up to 180 days) and bulk agricultural commodities and quasi-capital goods (on terms up to 360 days).

Multilateral Development Banks: U.S. TRADE AND DEVELOPMENT AGENCY (USTDA):  The U.S. Trade and Development Agency helps companies create U.S. jobs through the export of U.S. goods and services for priority development projects in emerging economies.  USTDA links U.S. businesses to export opportunities by funding project preparation and partnership building activities that develop sustainable infrastructure and foster economic growth in partner countries.

USTDA facilitates U.S. business participation in the preparation and execution of infrastructure development projects.  The Agency helps build the infrastructure for trade, match U.S. expertise with overseas development needs, and facilitate business partnerships between U.S. industry and emerging markets.  These partnerships allow the Agency to target its investments toward projects that are most likely to be implemented using U.S. goods and services.

The Agency funds early-stage project preparation activities such as feasibility studies, technical assistance and pilot projects, which provide the analysis needed for projects to attract financing and reach implementation.

Additionally, USTDA creates market access for U.S. companies, connecting them with key decision-makers in emerging economies by hosting reverse trade missions, conferences, workshops, and trainings.  The Agency’s reverse trade missions bring overseas decision-makers to the United States to introduce them to the design, manufacture and operation of U.S. goods and services that can help advance their infrastructure development goals.

In the region, USTDA’s key areas of focus include supporting clean energy development and energy security, improving transportation and trade infrastructure, and deploying innovative ICT solutions. 

USTDA achieves an incredible rate of return on U.S. taxpayer dollars, generating $104 of U.S. exports for every $1 programmed.  The Agency has generated over $66 billion in U.S. exports since its inception, including over $4.9 billion new exports identified in FY 2018 alone.

USTDA’s regional office, covering all of Southeast Asia, is located at the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok, Thailand.  USTDA’s Southeast Asia staff members can be contacted either in the Washington, D.C.-area headquarters or in Bangkok.

In Thailand:
In Washington, DC:

OPIC AND OTHER INVESTMENT INSURANCE PROGRAMS:  The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) provides debt financing, political risk insurance, and private equity capital to support U.S. investors and their investments.  It does so under a bilateral agreement with Thailand.  OPIC can provide debt financing in the form of direct loans and loan guarantees of up to $350 million per project for business investments in Thailand, covering sectors as diverse as tourism, transportation, manufacturing, franchising, power, infrastructure, and others.  OPIC political risk insurance for currency inconvertibility, expropriation, and political violence is also available for U.S. investments including equity, loans and loan guarantees, technical assistance, leases, and consigned inventory or equipment.  In addition, OPIC supports five private equity funds that are eligible to invest in projects in Thailand.  In all cases OPIC support is available only where sufficient or appropriate investment support is not available from local or other private sector financial institutions.  As the Thai financial and insurance markets are quite developed, there is limited need for OPIC support.
In late 2019, OPIC will be renamed the U.S. Development Finance Corporation (DFC) with a larger regional portfolio.