India-based mortgage lender HDFC announced that it has secured the largest-ever social loan globally, signing a $1.1 billion syndicated facility to finance affordable housing in India. The deal also marks the first social external commercial borrowing (ECB) loan out of India.

Proceeds from the social loan will go towards financing affordable housing loans in India, aligned with Reserve Bank of India (RBI) guidelines. According to HDFC Chairman Deepak Parekh, boosting affordable housing plays a significant role towards achieving the government’s “Housing for All” objective.

Launched in 2015, the Housing for All initiative aims to provide permanent housing, including basic amenities, to homeless households and those living in dilapidated houses in rural areas.

Parekh added:

“In India, housing will play an important role as a catalyst for growth with increased demand for affordable housing. Combined with India’s growth prospects, I have never been as optimistic about the affordable housing sector as I am today.”

MUFG Bank acted as lead social loan coordinator on the deal, and as a Mandated Lead Arranger and Bookrunner (MLAB). Additional MLABs for the loan included CTBC Bank, Mizuho Bank, State Bank of India and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation.

Colin Chen, MUFG’s Head of ESG Finance for Asia Pacific, said:

“This is a tremendous milestone for MUFG in India. We have long established ourselves as a leading player in the country’s renewables and clean energy sectors, but this social loan further demonstrates our ability to tailor ESG solutions across different industries to effect meaningful change. HDFC has set a new benchmark for the Indian corporate community, and MUFG is privileged to have played a role in taking HDFC’s sustainability commitment to the next level.”

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