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The OPEC Fund supports SMEs and economic growth in Turkmenistan
Vienna, Austria, May 7, 2020. The OPEC Fund for International Development (the OPEC Fund) has signed a US$10 million term loan in favour of the State Bank for Foreign Economic Affairs of Turkmenistan (SBFEAT) to enable the bank to better support small- and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) in the country. The proposed transaction is the OPEC Fund’s first private sector transaction in Turkmenistan.
Access to finance is very important to SME growth in Turkmenistan. The proposed OPEC Fund facility will support SME and economic growth, in line with Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 8 on inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all.
Turkmenistan’s government launched ‘The State Program for Supporting Small and Medium Entrepreneurship’ in 2018 and its main goals include ensuring socio-economic development continues at pace, that private sector-led activity increases quickly, and that manufactured goods and services provided by SMEs increase in number and competitiveness in foreign markets.
“The OPEC Fund is directly supporting the goals of the government’s program with this transaction,” said OPEC Fund Director-General Dr Abdulhamid Alkhalifa. “We are pleased to assist socio-economic development efforts via supporting Turkmenistan to diversify its economy and generate employment opportunities.”
Turkmenistan’s SBFEAT was established in 1992 and is a 100 percent state-owned entity. The Bank currently has 309 employees, three branches and some 375,000 customers.
About the OPEC Fund
The OPEC Fund is a development finance institution established by the member states of OPEC in 1976. The OPEC Fund works in cooperation with developing country partners and the international donor community to stimulate economic growth and alleviate poverty in all disadvantaged regions of the world. It does this by providing financing to build essential infrastructure, strengthen social services and promote productivity, competitiveness and trade. The OPEC Fund's work is people-centered, focusing on projects that meet basic needs – such as food, energy, infrastructure, microfinance, clean water and sanitation, healthcare and education. The OPEC Fund aims to encourage self-reliance and inspire hope for the future.