The EBRD has agreed a €40mn (US$52mn) credit line to Turkey’s Denizbank to on-lend to local small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the agribusiness sector.

The loan is part of the EBRD’s €400mn Turkey agribusiness SME financing facility which was launched in November to address the demand for longer-tenor financing of agribusiness enterprises.

“Through this project, the EBRD is reinforcing its commitment to support the development of the real economy sector in Turkey, particularly in the country’s remote regions. This new financing framework will also assist Turkish banks in focusing on this priority sector and diversifying and lengthening their funding base,” says Francis Malige, EBRD director for financial institutions, Western Balkans, Eastern Europe and Turkey.

The small business sector represents a key driver of the Turkish economy, providing around 80% of the country’s employment, while agriculture accounts for around 10% of GDP, the EBRD confirms. Although corporate and consumer lending is picking up in Turkey, the access to financing remains limited for small companies in the agribusiness sector.