IFC Plans as Much as $2 Billion Investment in Turkey by 2015

Dec. 7 (Bloomberg) -- International Finance Corp., the World Bank’s private-sector investment arm, plans to invest between $1.7 billion and $2 billion in Turkey between 2012 and 2015, its fourth largest commitment in the world, under its country partnership strategy.

The Washington-based lender committed $173 million in its fiscal year 2013, which started in July, for projects including film manufacturer Superfilm, textile producer Sanko Tekstil, construction materials maker Izoduo, and infrastructure lending of $400 million for renewable energy and gas generation projects, Dimitris Tsitsiragos, vice president for Europe, Middle East and North Africa, said at a news conference in Istanbul today. The lender also provided $20 million to Mediterra Capital Management Ltd., a buyout firm based in Istanbul, for its debut fund of about $195 million, he said.

IFC has an outstanding exposure of $2.5 billion to Turkey, the second biggest in the world the lender has, Tsitsiragos said in his Istanbul office, the largest outside the institution’s head office in Washington, from where he controls 52 countries in the region.

“We are focusing on Turkey’s southeast region and frontiers,” Tsitsiragos said, referring to the country’s poorest region. IFC provided $50 million facility to a cardboard maker in the southeastern town of Kahramanmaras, he said.

“We also want to support Turkish companies that are seeking to do business in India, Northern Iraq and Latin America,” Tsitsiragos said.

IFC could exceed its 2012-2015 country partnership strategy of the committed $2 billion should there be demand for it, Tsitsiragos said.

“We want to bring in a dollar from other sources for every dollar we put in,” Tsitsiragos said. “Ideally we would like to have $2 for every dollar we provide.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Ercan Ersoy in Istanbul at eersoy@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Benedikt Kammel at bkammel@bloomberg.net