Washington DC, USA, June 3, 2010 —
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, announced it is investing in
GAC Group to help the global shipping, logistics and marine services provider
acquire new vessels to support offshore oil operations, spurring economic
development and better employment opportunities in a number of emerging
Infrastructure is a global priority for IFC and the $35 million loan to
GAC will finance the group’s purchase of up to six supply vessels to support
offshore oil rigs. Three vessels will operate in Kazakhstan, while the
others will operate in Africa and the Middle East. GAC is one of the first
international marine operators in the Caspian. The company has more than
10 years of experience in the region, and is today the largest international
operator in Turkmenistan.
Anita George, IFC Director for Infrastructure, said, “IFC is pleased to
support GAC Group, a reliable marine services and offshore supply vessel
operator, to expand its services in Kazakhstan and in other markets. The
project will have significant development impact in terms of greater efficiency,
safety and training and transfer of industry best practices to local staff."
Erland Ebbersten, GAC Group Vice President for Europe, Africa, Mediterranean,
Black & Caspian Sea, said, “GAC’s expansion underlines the group’s
commitment to the Caspian region. We believe we can contribute significantly
to development of the energy infrastructure in the Caspian, and we welcome
IFC’s support in making this meaningful task possible for us.”
Kazakhstan has been unable to exploit its large reserves of oil and gas
largely because of a lack of infrastructure, support services, and equipment.
Financing for new vessels and equipment has been difficult in the country
and the wider region, as entry and exit costs are high, because the only
route out of the area is frozen for up to 6 months of the year. The global
financial crisis has exacerbated this challenge.
IFC’s support for GAC will also help improve employment prospects in a
number of emerging markets as the majority of the company’s employees
will be hired locally and will benefit from its training programs.
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 capital for private enterprise, and providing advisory and risk
mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments
totaled $14.5 billion in fiscal 2009, helping channel capital into developing
countries during the financial crisis. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.
GAC is a global provider of shipping, logistics and marine services. These
services are constantly being refined and integrated to serve our customers’
increasing need for competitive solutions. Emphasising trust, reliability
and a strong human touch, GAC has been building its reputation in its chosen
markets since 1956. Headquartered in Dubai, GAC employs over 9,000
people in more than 300 offices worldwide. More info at www.gacworld.com.