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EIF to Manage Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance Funds in the Republic of Turkey

    Date: 12 July 2010

The EIF is to become the first International Finance Institution to support regional development in Turkey through the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA) programme of the European Union. 

The European Investment Bank Group (EIB Group), which comprises the European Investment Bank (EIB) and EIF, will implement the Greater Anatolia Guarantee Facility (GAGF), a tailor-made financial tool aiming to reach SMEs and microenterprises in the less developed regions of Turkey. GAGF combines EUR 32 million of IPA funds managed by EIF, and EUR 250 million of EIB lending. The blend of funding and portfolio risk sharing at an EIB Group level brings a minimum of EUR 500 million new lending to a region which has 25% of the country's SMEs but yet only receives 10% in SME lending. 

Richard Pelly, EIF's Chief Executive, stated: "I am delighted that GAGF is launched as it will give SMEs and microenterprises the opportunity to access much needed finance for their establishment and growth and will contribute to the development of Turkey's most disadvantaged regions." 

Matthias Kollatz-Ahnen, Vice President of the EIB and EIF Board member added: "GAGF is a pioneering EIB Group programme in cooperation with the European Commission that blends the strengths of our organisation in terms of funding, risk sharing and expertise in structured finance, which is no doubt a model to be replicated in other geographies." 

The official launch of GAGF will take place at the Hilton Hotel in Ankara on 16 July 2010 in an event to be hosted by the Honourable Minister of the Republic of Turkey, Mr. Nihat Ergun. 

The Greater Anatolia Guarantee Facility is sponsored by the IPA funds allocated for the Regional Competitiveness Operational Programme by the European Union and the Republic of Turkey and is managed by the European Investment Fund, part of the EIB Group. 

About the EIB Group

The EIB Group comprises the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the European Investment Fund (EIF). EIB supports the policy and strategic objectives of the European Union by granting long-term loans for economically viable projects. The total of new financing operations in 2009 was around EUR 80 billion, of which EUR 2 billion went to Turkey. At the end of 2009 the total amount of finance outstanding in Turkey stood at over EUR 50 billion.

EIF is Europe's leading developer of risk financing for entrepreneurship and innovation.  Its central mission is to support Europe's small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) by helping them to access finance. EIF designs and develops venture and growth capital and guarantees instruments which specifically target this market segment. In this role, EIF fosters EU objectives in support of innovation, regional development, entrepreneurship, growth, and employment. At end 2009 EIF outstanding commitment in guarantee operations amounted to EUR 13.6bn with EUR 186 million dedicated to Turkey. At end 2009 EIF also had net commitments of EUR 4.1bn in equity, EUR 104 million of which invested in Turkish venture capital, including EUR 50m in Turkey's first ever dedicated fund of funds programme called Istanbul Venture Capital Initiative which has a capitalisation of EUR 160 million. 

About GAGF

GAGF comprises three main pillars. The first pillar is a counter-guarantee agreement with the Kredi Garanti Fonu (KGF), which aims to reach around 1,500 microenterprises in the Target Region through Financial Intermediaries. This is a EUR 5 million component. The second pillar, with a commitment of EUR 25 million, is a direct guarantee to be provided to five partner Financial Intermediaries which aims to generate a new SME portfolio of EUR 500 million in the Target Region. For this, EIB shall contribute EUR 250 million in lending. Finally, a third pillar comprises EUR 2 million earmarked for capacity building and promotion of the Facility. The Target Region encompasses 43 of the least developed provinces in Turkey, a region covering the area stretching from Kastamonu, Samsun, Kayseri and Kahramanmaras to Kars and Van in the East of Turkey.

This project is co-financed by the European Union and the Republic of Turkey.

For any queries, please contact Mrs. Ozlem Cotuk, EIF Project Manager:  o.cotuk@eif.org


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