US launches largest ever infra loan scheme
US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood encouraged states and cities across the country to submit letters of interest for the TIFIA (Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act) programme, which provides direct loans, loan guarantees, and standby lines of credit to major infrastructure projects.
LaHood also announced the establishment of the Project Finance Centre to help state and local government project sponsors analyse financial options for projects facing funding challenges.
The recently enacted surface transportation bill, known as MAP-21, provided $1.7bn in capital over two years for the TIFIA credit assistance program, up from $120m in 2012, making it the largest transportation infrastructure finance fund in the Department’s history. Highways, bridges, passenger rail and public transit projects are all eligible for the loans.
To date, the TIFIA programme has used $9.2bn in funding to leverage more than $36.4bn in capital to help build 27 major transportation projects around the country including the recent Presidio Parkway and Virginia’s Midtown tunnel.