The FINANCIAL — IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is investing 80 million euro in a project bond that will support the construction of next-generation healthcare facilities in Elazig, a city in eastern Turkey that is fast-becoming a medical hub. The project will help improve access to high-quality public health services in the region.
The 20-year bond, which totals 288 million euro, is the first project bond financing of a hospital under a public-private partnership (PPP) in Turkey. The IFC-backed project is part of the Turkey Health Transformation Program, a unique initiative that is designed to achieve a major overhaul of the country’s public hospitals. The 1000-bed Elazig Integrated Health Campus will comprise five health facilities equipped with ultra-modern technology. The campus will replace outdated and scattered hospitals leading to increased efficiency of healthcare services, according to IFC.
As an anchor investor on the bond issue, IFC, through its large investment, strengthened investor confidence in the country and the project. IFC’s participation also helped attract a broad and diverse set of international investors to participate in the project bond, providing funding at tenors that are not commonly available in Turkey’s project finance market. This commercial tranche is supported by an innovative credit enhancement mechanism provided by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and World Bank Group’s Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA). The credit enhanced tranche received a Baa2 rating from Moody’s, two notches above the Government of Turkey’s current sovereign rating of Turkey.
“We highly value IFC’s participation in this transaction,” said Kamil Yanıkömeroğlu, Chairman of the Board of Rönesans Healthcare and Real Estate divisions. “As an international financial institution experienced in health PPPs as well as enhancing capital market debuts, IFC has played an important role in helping us tap into a diversified set of institutional investors.”
The bond is also the first “green and social” project bond in Turkey, verified by a major environmental, social and governance rating company, Vigeo. The proceeds will finance construction of a campus, equipped with climate-friendly technologies.
“Capital markets create access to long-term, stable financing, that can play a critical role in expanding affordable healthcare services for a large part of population,” said Aisha Williams, IFC Country Manager for Turkey. “Successful issuance of the bond for the health campus in Elazig is expected to pioneer the market, allowing other projects to explore similar structures for mobilizing long-term financing for Turkey’s healthcare sector.”
The two largest shareholders in the issuer company’s consortium are Ronesans Holding A.S, one of Turkey’s largest construction companies, an IFC equity client, and the leading sponsor in the Healthcare PPP pipeline in Turkey with its PPP investor entity Rönesans Healthcare, as well as global infrastructure fund Meridiam.
This investment supports the World Bank Group’s Country Partnership Strategy for Turkey as it helps improve equity and social services through contributing to a more effective and financially sustainable health system.
Elazig Integrated Health Campus is part of the PPP program developed by the Turkish Ministry of Health.
IFC has supported the program with over $165 million of direct financing and mobilized an additional $245 million for three healthcare PPP projects in Turkey. As a result, three health campuses, each with several hospitals, will be built in Ankara, Kayseri, and Adana. Public health services are accessible to a large majority of Turkey’s population, whose health care needs are covered by the Universal Health Insurance system.
With a total portfolio of $5billion, Turkey is IFC’s second-largest country of operations globally and host to its largest office outside Washington D.C. In fiscal year 2016, IFC had a record year in Turkey, investing $1.8 billion, including mobilization.