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İşbank to lend $127m to Turkish women-led smes


Written by Eric Apim on Tuesday, August 30th 2022 à 15:47 | Read 276 times



The EBRD wants to promote Turkish women's entrepreneurship (photo: EBRD)
The EBRD wants to promote Turkish women's entrepreneurship (photo: EBRD)
TURKEY. The European Bank for Development and Reconstruction (EBRD) is releasing a $127 million line of credit to Türkiye İş Bankası (İşbank) on Tuesday, August 30, 2022. The Turkish institution will be able to on-lend this envelope in the form of loans to local companies, under several conditions.

These credits will only be granted to Sme's run by women. Moreover, the sums concerned by the loans will only have to cover green investments. The funds will be divided between the Turkey Woman in Business (TurWiB II) and Turkey Sustainable Energy Finance Facility (TurSEFF III) programs. The EBRD's €127 million will allow the planned financing of TurSEFF III (€350 million) to be fully subscribed.

At the same time, these SMEs will benefit from risk sharing through the Turkish Credit Guarantee Fund and the Turkish Ministry of Treasury and Finance. Women leaders will also have access to advisory, mentoring and networking services. This plus "will facilitate their access to know-how, non-financial development services and markets," the European Bank said in its statement.

EBRD pledges €600 million to Turkish women entrepreneurs

These €127 million are part of the €600 million in financing dedicated to Turkish women entrepreneurs announced during her official visit to Turkey in November 2021 by Odile Renaud-Basso, President of the EBRD since November 2020. This commitment was initiated in 2014 with an initial release of $300 million to support women entrepreneurship in this country. It was confirmed in September 2019 with the publication of its new 2019-2024 strategy in Turkey, giving as one of the priorities the promotion of economic inclusion and gender equality in the private sector.

EBRD investments in Turkey reached a record high in 2021 with a total amount of €2bn. Half of the projects supported (20 out of 42) included a gender equality component. The bank has provided thousands of women-owned businesses with €600 million in earmarked loans (of which €115 million has already been provided through Denizbank, Akbank and Yapi Kredi) as part of its "Women in Business" program.

"The EBRD remains committed to ensuring the competitiveness of women-led businesses in Turkey and will continue to expand financial opportunities for women in the economy," comments Arvid Tuerkner. EBRD's Director General for Turkey also stresses that he is "determined to accelerate the country's green agenda through our investments."

İşbank is Turkey's leading private lender. Notably, it had already secured a $54 million line of credit from the EBRD in early September 2020 to boost bank lending to Turkish companies affected by the consequences of the coronavirus pandemic.



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