Press Releases

IFC Investment in Conveyer Belt Manufacturer Supports Economic Recovery in Kosovo

In Istanbul:
Basak Pamir Ulgen
Phone: + 90 212 385 3075

In London:

Carmen Powell

Phone: +44 207 286 5439

Suhareke, Kosovo, July 27, 2010- IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is providing a loan of up to €5.2 million to Newko Balkan LLC, a producer of rubber conveyer belts, which will foster economic recovery and cross-border trade in Kosovo.

IFC’s investment in the company, owned by Turkish firm Ozer Konveyör Band Turizm Sanayi ve Ticaret A.Ş. (Ozerband), will help meet growing demand in Turkey and Kosovo for the belts, which are used to transport bulk materials like coal, minerals and cement. Newko Balkan is the only producer of rubber conveyer belts in Kosovo. Total estimated project cost is €11.3 million.

“We are certain that our products will be in high demand in Turkey and Kosovo and we hope to increase our market share in European markets as well,” said Yusuf Ozer CEO of Ozerband.

Demand growth for rubber conveyor belts is highly correlated with the growth of electric generation and consumption. While the demand for electricity in Southeast Europe is expected to grow annually by 2.3 percent, the demand in Kosovo and Turkey is expected to grow much faster in the coming years.  

“This loan represents our first investment in Kosovo since its independence. We hope to encourage other foreign investors to look at opportunities offered by the country’s economy,” said Giovanni Danielle, IFC Resident Representative. “We are pleased to support Ozerband and we are ready to look into other south-south investments into Kosovo.”

About IFC

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in developing countries. We create opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We do so by providing financing to help businesses employ more people and supply essential services, by mobilizing capital from others, and by delivering advisory services to ensure sustainable development. In a time of global economic uncertainty, our new investments climbed to a record $18 billion in fiscal 2010. For more information, visit

About Ozerband

Ozerband, established in 1976, is the only rubber conveyor belt manufacturer in Turkey. It is part of a family-owned and operated diversified industrial group active in rubber conveyor belts, marble mining and processing, rubber boots and shoes and tourism. In 2005, Ozerband purchased I.G.K. Balkan, a state- owned entity established in 1963 to meet the rubber conveyor belt needs of the former Yugoslavia and the former Soviet Republics. The company subsequently was renamed Newko Balkan LLC. For more information, visit:,