Baker McKenzie recently advised Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) on credit support (together with Export Finance Australia (EFA) and United States International Development Finance Corporation (DFC)) for Telstra’s acquisition of Digicel Pacific Limited (Digicel Pacific). JBIC and DFC will each provide USD50 million in credit guarantees for EFA’s USD 1.33 billion financing package, which was provided to support the acquisition of Digicel Pacific by Telstra.
Telstra’s acquisition of Digicel Pacific is supporting the delivery of high-quality telecommunication services in the region. Digicel Pacific is the leading telecommunications service provider in the Pacific, holding more than 60 percent market share with over 2.5 million subscribers in Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Vanuatu, Samoa, Tonga and Nauru.
The agreements deliver on a commitment made by Australian Prime Minister Albanese, Prime Minister Kishida of Japan, and U.S. President Biden at a Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGII) event at the G20 Summit on 15 November 2022, to work together with Indo-Pacific partners to meet their needs for high-quality, sustainable infrastructure.
Since 2018, EFA, JBIC and DFC have worked closely together under the Trilateral Infrastructure Partnership (TIP) to deliver on their countries’ commitment to help build a stronger Pacific region through investment in sustainable infrastructure, which is critical to economic development and improving business environments. These agreements build on that strong history of cooperation.
Baker McKenzie's Tokyo office team was led by partner, Kosuke Suzuki and Baker McKenzie's Sydney office team was led by partner, Alastair Gourlay and special counsel, Dean Bao. Assistance was also provided by partner Mark Tibberts and associate Andrew Salerno in Baker McKenzie’s New York office.
Kosuke stated: “It was a pleasure to advise JBIC on this important strategic investment in the Pacific. The deal is significant when you consider Australia, Japan and the United States' commitment to the region’s telecommunications infrastructure.” Alastair added that “This financing achieves JBIC’s core aim of promoting economic cooperation between Japan and overseas countries through strategic investments, and we were delighted to play our part in achieving those objectives.”