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Washington, D.C., July 1, 2004
—The International Finance Corporation, the private sector financing arm of the World Bank Group, has signed an agreement to invest $92.5 million in Trakya Glass Bulgaria. The investment will help the parent company, Turkiye Sise ve Cam Fabrikalari, the holding company of the Sisecam Group, finance a new float glass and glassware facility in Targovishte, Bulgaria. The project is the largest foreign direct investment in Bulgaria since 1989.
IFC’s investment includes $85 million in loans and $7.5 million in equity. The loan consists of $35 million equivalent for IFC’s own account and syndications of $50 million equivalent.
A. Dogan Arikan, president of the Sisecam Group, said, “Sisecam has enjoyed a long-standing relationship with IFC and values its financial support and advice. IFC has already financed Sisecam plants in Georgia and the Russian Federation. We appreciate IFC’s continued commitment to our internationalization efforts, as reflected in the financing of Trakya Bulgaria.”
Khosrow Zamani, director of IFC’s Southern Europe and Central Asia Department, said, “It is critical for international financial institutions to support viable private sector projects in Bulgaria as the country prepares for accession to the European Union.” He added, “IFC’s financing is an important vote of confidence in both Sisecam and Bulgaria’s glass manufacturing sector. Our investment contributes to development of a regional glass production center in northern Bulgaria.”
Richard Ranken, director of IFC’s Global Manufacturing and Services Department, said, “IFC’s involvement has been instrumental in mobilizing long-term financing for Bulgaria from the international banking community and is expected to encourage further investment in the country. The project reflects IFC’s continued support to an existing client and will help Sisecam establish manufacturing facilities in a new environment. IFC’s financing will enhance Sisecam’s cost competitiveness and help it penetrate export markets in the Balkans. In addition to being a long-term financier, IFC has helped Sisecam improve its environmental standards and apply them to its international operations.”
Sisecam is a leading Turkish glass manufacturer and exporter. It produces a wide range of glass products, including flat glass, mechanical and handmade tableware, containers, glass fiber, and chemicals. Established in 1935, the company is one of the principal industrial manufacturing enterprises in Turkey, with a workforce of over 12,500 people.
IFC's mission (www.ifc.org) is to promote sustainable private sector investment in developing countries, helping to reduce poverty and improve people's lives. IFC finances private sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets, helps clients improve social and environmental sustainability, and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses. From its founding in 1956 through FY03, IFC has committed more than $37 billion of its own funds and arranged $22 billion in syndications for 2,990 companies in 140 developing countries. IFC's worldwide committed portfolio as of FY03 was $16.8 billion for its own account and $6.6 billion held for participants in loan syndications.
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