The World Bank is to provide $300mn (€248.4mn) in funding to help Turkey’s organised industrial zones (OIZs) become more efficient, environmentally sustainable and competitive.
Investments in basic infrastructure including new roads, water and gas pipelines, power lines and logistics facilities will benefit, the World Bank said. Turkey’s industry and technology ministry will implement the project.
Turkey has 346 OIZs. They provide more than one-third of the country’s exports and employ 2.1mn people, equivalent to around a third of total industrial employment in the country, the World Bank noted.
‘Green’ infrastructure will also benefit from the project. Improved energy and water efficiency facilities, advanced wastewater treatment plants, energy-efficient buildings, LED street lighting and renewable energy assets will receive some funding.
A smaller part of the loan will be dedicated to raising the competitiveness of the OIZs through investment in innovation and training centres that link them with science and research organisations and academia, the World Bank said.
The fixed-spread loan has a final maturity of 10.5 years, including a grace period of 5 years.
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has further emphasised the need for the project, which would be crucial for laying foundations for a sustained and ‘green’ recovery, Auguste Kouame, the country director for Turkey at the World Bank, said, adding: "In addition, innovation centres will enable OIZ firms to maintain or deepen their participation in global value chains post-COVID by increasing the competitiveness of OIZs around the country."
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