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EBRD and KICB support food producer in southern Kyrgyz city of Osh

By Svitlana  Pyrkalo

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US$ 1 million joint financing for Shirin-Sulaiman will support company’s biscuit business
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is continuing its support for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the Kyrgyz Republic through its partnerships with local banks.
Food producer Shirin-Sulaiman is the latest firm to benefit from the EBRD’s Medium-Sized Co-Financing Facility supporting medium-sized businesses. The Facility allows local partner banks to lend more to such companies by sharing risk with the EBRD, an arrangement that makes loans more attractive for borrowers.
The Kyrgyz Investment and Credit Bank (KICB) and the EBRD are providing the total financing package of US$ 1 million to Shirin-Sulaiman, a biscuit and cake producer in the southern city of Osh. The EBRD aims to boost support for agribusiness SMEs in the southern areas of the Kyrgyz Republic, and Shirin-Sulaiman, founded in 2004, is the EBRD’s second such client. Shirin-Sulaiman is a leading local player in the biscuit sector, with a 30 per cent market share in the Osh and Jalalabad regions. The majority of employed staff is women from the area.
The proceeds will be used to modernize its production facilities resulting in improvements of health and safety standards.
Since autumn 2014, Shirin-Sulaiman has been working with the EBRD’s Small Business Support (SBS) team. The donor-supported SBS programme, which promotes good management through advice and consultations for local businesses, is helping Shirin-Sulaiman to streamline its accounting systems for the regional branches of its pastry and confectionery business.
EBRD financing is secured by the first-loss guarantee mechanism of the European Union’s Investment Facility for Central Asia (IFCA) SME Finance Facility.
To date, the EBRD has invested about €572 million in the Kyrgyz economy. Supporting SMEs and deepening presence in the regions are among key priorities for the EBRD in the Kyrgyz Republic, according to the new country strategy approved in February 2015.
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