Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) --
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is investing US$25 million in the Eurasia Real Estate Development Company to help build a high-quality retail center that is expected to create about 10,000 jobs and spur sector growth in Kazakhstan.
IFC’s investment will help Eurasia RED establish a 100,000 square-meter shopping and entertainment center in Almaty, Kazakhstan’s largest city and commercial center, to address the shortage of modern retail space. The first phase involves the completion of the A’port Raimbek, a 55,000 square-meter retail center scheduled to open in June 2009. The second phase is a 45,000 square-meter extension project that will follow in the near future.
“This project will help create jobs and serve as a catalyst for additional improvements in Almaty’s infrastructure,” said Shahbaz Mavaddat, IFC Director for Southern Europe and Central Asia. “IFC’s financing will contribute to the city’s ongoing urban-renewal efforts and its competitiveness within the region. It will also help increase the stock of modern real estate and retail infrastructure.”
IFC is also planning to provide an additional US$20 million at a later stage and to mobilize additional funding from parallel lenders to support the project. Kazakhstan’s retail sector is underdeveloped and dominated by independent shops and other small businesses. Many retailers in Almaty are keen to expand, but retail space is limited. As the city’s continues to grow as a major financial and business hub for Central Asia, demand for retail space will only increase.
Eurasia RED, a Hungarian company, is a commercial real estate development company that specializes in retail centers in Kazakhstan. The company’s pipeline of projects includes A’port Kulja, an 80,000 square-meter shopping center in Almaty.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, creates opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development, mobilizing private capital, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. New investments totaled US$16.2 billion in fiscal 2008, a 34 percent increase over the previous year.