On June 29, 2015, MIGA issued a guarantee of $32.6 million covering a non-shareholder loan from ING Bank, a Branch of ING-DiBa AG of Germany to the Izmir Metropolitan Municipality (IMM) for the Izmir Metro project in Turkey. The coverage is for a period of up to 15 years against the risk of non-honoring of financial obligations by a sub-sovereign entity.
The project consists of the acquisition of 85 Light Rail Transit (LRT) carriages, as part of the increase in capacity and expansion of the metro system in the city of Izmir. The railcars will be operated by Izmir Metro A.S. (Izmir Metro), IMM’s municipal public transport company, on the existing metro network. The network is primarily an above-ground LRT system that connects the eastern and western parts of the city. It comprises 17 stations spread over a total of 19 kilometers and serves around 200,000 passengers per day (approximately 65 million per year) with 77 railcars currently in operation.
The World Bank Group’s International Finance Corporation (IFC) is a lender to the project.
The project will improve urban transit services, limit traffic congestion along important sections of Izmir’s arterial road network, and contribute to greenhouse gas reduction. The new railcars will help meet existing and future demand from the population and accommodate the ongoing expansion of the metro line in Izmir.
The project will also complement MIGA’s recent support to Izmir’s marine transportation and tramway projects, as well as IFC’s traffic management project, all aimed at upgrading IMM’s environmentally-friendly integrated public transport system.
The project is aligned with the World Bank Group’s Country Partnership Strategy for Turkey. Improving transportation infrastructure is a key component of the Bank Group’s focus on helping Turkey improve its competitiveness and employment opportunities.
MIGA’s support for this investment is also aligned with the Agency’s strategy of supporting investments in projects that contribute to energy efficiency and reduce climate change as well as investments in middle-income countries.