At a high-level conference in Istanbul, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development revealed it will finance sustainable energy in Turkey with an additional EUR 500 million. Under the Mid-size Sustainable Energy Financing Facility (MidSEFF), now totalling EUR 1.5 billion, funds are provided to Turkish banks in the form of loans and capital market instruments for on-lending to private sector companies. The financing – supported by the European Union and the Turkish Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources – will benefit renewable energy and resource efficiency projects in Turkey including solar, hydropower, wind, geothermal, waste-to-energy and energy efficiency as well as water saving and waste minimization projects, EBRD said on its website. Akbank is the first to join the extension of the programme with USD 110 million (EUR 98.15 million) in financing in addition to EUR 89.23 million received in 2011.
“The highly successful MidSEFF programme has already financed 43 projects through seven Turkish banks and has helped build over 800 MW of additional renewable energy capacity. This represents a major step for Turkey towards its goal of developing 30% of total installed capacity from renewable sources by 2023,” said Terry McCallion, EBRD’s director for energy efficiency and climate change.
The European Union is supporting the programme with a EUR 6.8 million grant for technical assistance through its Instrument for Pre-Accession in collaboration with the Turkish Treasury and the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources. The grant funding enables the EBRD to provide expert advice to its partner banks and to private sector companies seeking finance for their renewable energy and resource efficiency projects. Almost half of the bank’s total portfolio in Turkey is in sustainable energy and since 2009 it has invested EUR 3 billion in over 70 such projects, including two of the country’s largest wind farms – Bares and Rotor – and the largest geothermal power plant in Turkey (and second largest in Europe), Efeler.
The bank helped develop the country’s first National Renewable Energy Action Plan to attract more investment in renewable energy projects. It is currently working on a National Energy Efficiency Action Plan to help Turkish industry become less energy intensive. EBRD operates from offices in Istanbul, Ankara and Gaziantep.