The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has agreed to provide a $100m loan to Turkish utility firm Enerjisa Enerji.

The utility firm will use EBRD’s loan to finance its ongoing investment programme and improve electricity distribution network in Turkey.

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Additionally, it will be the first loan offered by the bank to be linked to a new Turkish Lira Overnight Reference Rate (TLREF) benchmark.

Regulator Borsa Istanbul created TLREF risk-free rate in collaboration with the government and other market participants and advice from the EBRD Treasury.

EBRD Energy Eurasia director Aida Sitdikova said: “We are very pleased to expand our relationship with Enerjisa Enerji, which we see as a flagship company in the Turkish power sector, as illustrated by this transaction with the new TLREF benchmark, which will support the development of the Turkish capital market.”

Under the loan agreement with EBRD, Enerjisa Enerji has agreed to cooperate with the financial institution on promoting equal opportunities in the power sector.

Enerjisa Enerji distributes and retails electricity to 21 million people in Turkey. It is a joint venture company of Sabanci Holding and E.ON, with each company holding a 40% stake while the remaining 20% stake is a free float on Borsa Istanbul.

Enerjisa Enerji CFO Michael Moser said: “As leader in the Turkish energy market, Enerjisa Enerji is happy to contribute again to the development of financial instruments supporting corporations in Turkey.

“After the issuance of first-of-a-kind CPI-linked corporate bonds, Enerjisa Enerji has now completed its first corporate loan linked to the new TLREF, which will deepen this benchmark.

“The EBRD financing will be used for the improvement of electricity infrastructure, and for sustainable and high-quality energy supply and technology investments.”

In March, four EBRD-financed windfarms commenced operations in Turkey.