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Clifford Chance advises on long-term financing for Bogotá-Girardot toll road in Colombia

2 May 2023

Clifford Chance advises on long-term financing for Bogotá-Girardot toll road in Colombia

New York: Leading international law firm Clifford Chance advised Blackrock Infrastructure, Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria Colombia S.A., JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., Financiera de Desarrollo Nacional S.A. and Unión para la Infraestructura – UPI, in connection with the COP 2.6 billion (~US$560 million) long-term financing of the Bogotá - Girardot toll road in Colombia.

The 145 km toll road running from Bogotá to Girardot is being developed by special purpose company Via 40 Express S.A.S., which is owned jointly by VINCI Highways and Industrial Conconcreto S.A.S. The Bogotá - Girardot toll road is considered Colombia's busiest toll road, crucial for transportation from the Buenaventura port to the center of the country.

The financing includes long-term and revolving credit facilities denominated in Colombian Pesos, UVR-indexed and synthetic Colombian Pesos.

Lead associate Julián Hurtado Vallejo commented, "Synthetic peso facilities are becoming a very useful tool for offshore lenders without access to local currency in Colombia, unlocking more sources of financing for sponsors developing peso revenue projects in the region. As the Colombian government reduces the dollar component in revenue structures in its PPPs, we expect to see more foreign lenders seeking this type of structure to access the market. This deal is a great example of Clifford Chance's ability to bring together a single team across multiple offices and practice areas with extensive experience in the financing of these projects."

Partner Fabricio Longhin said, "The successful closing of the Via 40 financing is a remarkable accomplishment and exemplifies the firm's continued dedication and commitment to the development and financing of infrastructure projects in the LatAm region.''

Working with Longhin and Hurtado Vallejo were associate Joyce Moore and foreign law clerks Adriana Cabal Gutierrez and Mariana Gutierrez Ruiz. The full Clifford Chance team included:

  • Global Financial Markets (Paris): partner Delphine Siino Courtin, avocats Elena Prudon, Hugues Martin-Sisteron and Maxence De Rouville and stagiaire Alexis Germain.
  • White Collar: Partner Megan Gordon, counsels Jacqueline Landells and Catherine Ennis
  • Tax: partner Avrohom Gelber and associates Wei Bin Tan and Caroline Koo
  • Hedging: Partner Darren Littlejohn and associate David Martinez
  • Counsel to Bridge Lenders: partner Jessica Springsteen, associate Alejandro León and foreign law clerk Jean André Petit advised Banco Santander S.A., Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank and MUFG Bank, Ltd.
  • Counsel to Administrative Agent and Collateral Agent: partner Daniel Winick, and associates Thomas McGowan and Xiaowen Zou advised Glas USA LLC and Glas Americas LLC.

Clifford Chance has a track record of advising on infrastructure financing transactions in Colombia, most recently advising on a complex debt refinancing for a strategic port in Cartagena. The firm also advised on the financing for the acquisition of two e-bus fleets in Bogotá and on the largest solar PV financing in Colombia.