By Tuba Sahin
The head of the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) Group on Thursday urged member countries to adopt different development models in which the private sector plays a vital role.
"The role of the private sector is crucial in achieving sustainable socioeconomic development in our member countries," Bandar Hajjar told the opening ceremony of the Exporters and Investors Summit, co-organized by the IsDB Group and Turk Eximbank, in Turkey’s Aegean Izmir province.
Hajjar highlighted that IsDB Group member countries face complex challenges that require innovative solutions, tools, means, and policies.
"In this regard, governments in developing countries can’t address these development challenges alone," Hajjar said.
He underlined the importance of the private sector as an engine for growth and investment and complementing the public along with multilateral resources.
"However, there is a need to create an enabling environment for the private sector that will ensure markets’ contributions to social and economic development," Hajjar said.
"In particular, the solution to funding growing needs is to invest and give a greater development role to the private sector."
Supporting Turk Eximbank
Hajjar added that IsDB Group’s cumulative financing support to Turk Eximbank amounted to $2.7 billion.
“Our strong cooperation with Turk Eximbank aims to boost export-related activities of Turkish contractors, SMEs, and support Turkey’s aspiration to position itself as a global market leader through enhanced export competitiveness,”
He added that the bank contributed significantly to developing the Turkish private sector.
“Our assistance has resulted in significant development impact such as 56 Turkish companies’ capacity expansion in various sectors, supporting the outreach of 41 Turkish companies to penetrate new markets, including in some African countries, and moving up the value chain of Turkish firms and deeper integration into global value chains,” Hajjar said.
Turk Eximbank CEO Adnan Yildirim said the event aims to enhance ties with the IsDB Group while gathering industrialists and business circles.
"We have common targets. The trade level of IsDB Group member countries with the world is around 9 percent, while it is around 20 percent internally. We think that it should be increased," Yildirim said.
Yildirim added that such events aim to boost the trade and investment volume of member countries.
Yildirim also said Turk Eximbank would meet its target of $50 billion for 2018 through providing funds from international institutions such as the IsDB Group and the World Bank.
During the two-day summit, investors, exporters, and contractors are exploring how IDB and Turk Eximbank can provide support and assistance to boost Turkish exports and services in global markets.
Turk Eximbank ranks second globally after South Korea’s Eximbank in terms of financing exports. Since its establishment in 1987, the bank has implemented international credit, guarantee, and credit insurance programs aimed at developing economic and political ties between Turkey and other countries.
Turkey is a founding member of the IsDB, which is the development arm of the Organization for Islamic Cooperation (OIC) -- established in 1975 -- to foster the economic development and social progress in member countries. Since the establishment of the IsDB, the bank has contributed more than $11.2 billion in funding to 483 projects in various sectors in Turkey such as infrastructure, agriculture, health, education, transport, energy, and trade. The bank, headquartered in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, currently has 57 members.