Prilep Marble Kombinat (PMK), located in Prilep, in the south-west of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, is a marble quarrying and processing company established in 1946. It has a number of long-term licenses to exploit several marble quarries, and produces Bianco Sivec, a registered and world renowned brand. The proposed project will assist in providing capital expenditure to ensure modernisation and improve output and productivity at PMK as well as providing medium-term working capital financing. The capital expenditure element will be used for the purchase of new equipment for quarrying and processing at PMK.
The project will assist in optimising the unique, premium quality marble from Prilep through investments in quarrying, expansion of international sales and thus further strengthening the brand name for Sivec marble. It will contribute to increasing world market competition in white marble and improve FYR Macedonia’s world market share. The support of FHL Kiriakidis (FHLK - Greece), the sponsor, will enhance the transfer and dispersion of transferable skills to this sector in the country. The overall project envisages improvement in corporate governance and disclosure in accordance with EU standards. The planned co-financing with a local commercial bank would be the first transaction in the country where a local bank provides medium-term corporate funding and thus will have a demonstration effect to other local commercial banks.
FHL Kiriakidis (FHLK), the largest marble company in Greece, is the main sponsor of the project and majority shareholder of Prilep Marble Kombinat (PMK), the proposed borrower. In 2002 FHLK was the world’s largest producer of premium quality white marble through its operations at PMK and it aims further to increase its sales, based on the quality and size of the reserves in Prilep, using the present investment programme as well as its extensive and expanding sales network.
Senior loan of up to €8 million. Of this amount up to €3 million is intended to be assigned to a local bank.
The project was classified B/1 requiring an environmental audit and analysis. The environmental investigations were carried out by independent consultants. A detailed Environmental and Technological study was also undertaken in 2002 and its findings approved by the Ministry of Environment. The Bank’s Environmental Specialist visited the site and discussions were held with Ministry of Environment and regulatory authorities. Environmental due diligence was focused on issues related to the commercial extraction of marble, the effect on the natural environment/ habitat, and the importance of sensitive restructuring and recultivation when the quarry is exhausted. Other issues include waste management (disposal, reuse and recycling); noise, dust, visual impact and land use planning. Occupational health and safety issues, particularly those related to dust exposure, noise and primary block extraction were also addressed.
The environmental investigations confirm that there are no significant environmental, health and safety issues associated with the operations.
The site is remote from any large population centre and water courses
the Sponsor has agreed and is operating an Environmental Management Plan in accordance with Government requirements
Noise and dust generation are in compliance with EU standards
Waste management including recultivation is carried out in accordance with international standards and in cooperation with the University and the Geological Institute of Skopje. The generation of large quantities of waste –although not representing an environmental health issue – creates significant visual impacts. The Company currently reuses 25 per cent of waste for construction material utilising crushing plants and is exploring further means of recycling and reusing waste materials in order to minimise the amounts of waste arising.
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