The Law establishing the Bank, TKB only permits loans to be made to joint stock companies. In order to reach SMEs TKB has decided to implement apex lending as a new financial instrument. Since TKB does not have a branch network in February 2008, it has signed an apex lending agreement with Garanti Bank a leading Commercial Bank in Turkey. The goal of the agreement is to finance small enterprises in OSTIM – Ivedik industrial zones – home to 12.000 SMEs and 50.000 workers. It is a pilot project in which TKB will try to raise funds for SMEs both locally and internationally.
The budget of the project is USD 16 million and will be used to finance investment and working capital requirements of SMEs where the maximum loan per company is US$400.000. As of March 2008, loans totalling about 3,5 million have already been disbursed to more than 80 companies.
As part of Country Development Strategy Turkey has been divided into regions of different levels of development. Each has a special administrative unit pursuing region specific strategies. In this context TKB is providing expertise in SWOT analysis and sectoral assesment analysis. In the Kýrýkkale province located east of Ankara, an underdeveloped region adversely affected by migration and lack of entrepreneurship spirit TKB was recently involved in sectoral SWOT analysis and identification of strategic issues. The strategies will be transformed into new action plans. The results were announced at a regional conference in March.