Baku, Azerbaijan, July 24
The Green for Growth Fund (GGF) is providing a USD 15m loan to AccessBank. The GGF loan will enable AccessBank to substantially increase its financing of energy efficiency projects and foster its role as a pioneer in energy efficiency financing in the country.
"We see particular opportunities for equipment and machinery investment by micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs)", commented Kenan Agayev, Executive Director of AccessBank for SME Lending/Corporate Services on the transaction.
AccessBank has a wide network of branches in Azerbaijan to service its MSME clients. The investments are expected to result in annual energy savings of over 43,500 MWh and improve the ecological environment in the country with CO2 emission reductions of over 21,000 tons.
"We are thrilled to launch our work in Azerbaijan with the market leader in MSME financing," said Christopher Knowles, Chairman of the Green for Growth Fund, Southeast Europe. "As AccessBank is clearly focused on this sector, this investment will quickly have an impact on the energy consumption of this country."
GGF is a European public-private partnership fund dedicated to enhancing energy efficiency and increasing the use of renewable energy sources in Southeast Europe, as well as in the nearby European Eastern Neighbourhood region. In addition to its loans GGF provides special support with its Technical Assistance Facility for energy efficiency assessments.
AccessBank was established in 2002 by Black Sea Trade and Development Bank, EBRD, IFC, KfW, a German consulting company LFS Financial Systems GmbH and AccessHolding. AccessBank provides loans to micro and small businesses and has a wide network of branches in Azerbaijan employing more than 2000 people. Fitch Ratings assessed AccessBank as BB+, the highest credit rating among all banks in Azerbaijan.