Project Finance International names EBRD ‘Global Multilateral of the Year’

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The FINANCIAL — The EBRD has been named Global Multilateral of the Year in Project Finance International’s annual awards for the world of project finance.

Project Finance International (PFI), owned by Thomson Reuters, is one of the leading sources of global intelligence on the sector and reports on the entire lifecycles of deals, from initial rumours to post-completion analysis.

In its announcement of the 2015 awards, PFI paid special tribute to the EBRD’s investment in Turkey.

“Turkey is now the Bank’s top destination for project finance, with its Turkish portfolio about to overtake its Russian portfolio in size for the first time in history,” wrote PFI.

“Jean-Patrick Marquet took up the post of director for Turkey in March, and the bank created an Istanbul-based position of managing director for Turkey and Central Asia (including Mongolia).

“Natalia Khanjenkova took up the position in April, marking the first time a managing director has been based in Istanbul.

“Turkish deals seemed to flow as if on cue, comprising B-loans on the country’s €12bn hospital PPP pipeline, but also in renewable energy, the Dalaman airport concession and corporate support for domestic banks and energy firms.

EBRD President Sir Suma Chakrabarti said: “I am delighted that the EBRD has been chosen for this prestigious award, the first time in the Bank’s history. The award rightly recognises our flexible response within a difficult geopolitical and economic context and the quality and impact of our investments.

“Our staff deserve our heartiest congratulations – it is their work that has led to this award.”

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PFI singled out the €1.2 billion Etlik hospital near Ankara and the €970 million Efeler geothermal project, the largest geothermal power plant in Turkey and the second largest in Europe, for praise.

Despite the falling lira and fears over the country’s election re-run in November, the EBRD positioned itself well during 2015 to take advantage of Turkey’s fast growing electricity market, the publication said.

The award also acknowledged the EBRD’s activity in Egypt, mentioning its work on PPP projects and support for the country’s renewable energy programme, according to EBRD.

In addition the title celebrated the EBRD’s financing of the largest solar project in Kazakhstan, the joint Kazakh-British 50MW Burnoye Solar project, as well smaller wind farms in Ukraine and Montenegro.

The publication also noted Sabina Dziurman’s appointment as director for Greece and Cyprus for its new office in Athens.

But Turkey and its wholesale electricity market also made possible Georgia’s 187MW Shuakhevi hydropower project, the  largest ever foreign investment in the country, PFI said..

The Shuakhevi plant, financed by the EBRD,  reduces Georgia’s dependence on imported fuel and fosters cross-border electricity trading to Turkey through the 315km Black Sea Energy Transmission Line, also part-financed by the EBRD.

“With Turkey now firmly locked on the bank’s radar, one can expect similar growth strategies to take hold in neighbouring countries during 2016,” concluded PFI.

The Awards will be presented at the 2015 PFI Awards Dinner at the Hilton, Park Lane, London on Wednesday, 3 February 2016.


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