SEOUL, Jan. 11 (Yonhap) — South Korea plans to nearly triple its lower-interest loans for the digital and green energy projects sought after by emerging countries by 2025, the finance ministry said Monday.

The country will increase the Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF) in the digital and green energy fields to US$1.4 billion in 2025 from last year’s $500 million, according to the Ministry of Economy and Finance.

To this end, the country plans to raise the fund to $800 million this year and to $1.2 billion next year, it added.

It is part of the government’s efforts to boost economic cooperation with developing nations on its signature New Deal initiatives, under which the government will invest 160 trillion won ($145.8 billion).

South Korea also plans to increase EDCF loans in the health care sector to $1 billion in 2025 from around $400 million for last year, as the country seeks to promote its response in the era of the COVID-19 pandemic.

To meet the goal, the country will raise such aid to $600 million this year and $800 million next year.

South Korea launched the EDCF program in 1987 in an effort to help other developing countries with their basic infrastructure facilities.