European development bank acquires stake in recycling arm of Turkish glass maker

European development bank acquires stake in recycling arm of Turkish glass maker

European development bank acquires stake in recycling arm of Turkish glass maker The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has said it acquired a minority stake in the recycling arm of Turkish glass producer Şişecam, in a move to help Turkey increase its glass recycling rate and boost its circular economy, in a written statement on June 28.

Şişecam is embarking on an ambitious 20-million-euro glass recycling operation, demonstrating its commitment to using more recycled glass than mined raw material, according to the statement.

“To support these efforts and contribute to a more competitive, resource-efficient circular economy in Turkey, the EBRD is acquiring a minority stake in Şişecam Çevre Sistemleri A.Ş., a newly established recycling arm of Şişecam, and is extending a 40-million-euro loan to finance glass recycling equipment and energy efficiency investments,” said the bank.

The EBRD has also mobilized an additional 2-million-euro loan from the Clean Technology Fund, a funding window of Climate Investment Funds, as well as EU grants, according to the statement.

The investment is part of the EBRD’s overall strategy to help countries where it invests in tackling global challenges such as climate change, said the bank.

With over 21,000 employees, production in 13 countries and sales in as many as 150 countries, the Şişecam Group is a global actor in business fields including all main areas of glass such as flat glass, glassware, glass packaging and glass fiber, as well as soda and chrome compounds. 

Şişecam has been operating for more than 80 years and is the third largest glassware, fourth largest glass packaging and fifth largest flat glass manufacturer in the world in terms of production capacity. 

Şişecam Cevre Sistemleri will provide its cullet suppliers with state-of-the-art equipment which they wouldn’t be able to invest in otherwise, according to data from the statement. This equipment will increase suppliers’ collection and treatment capacities as well as the quality of the cullet, strengthening the entire glass recycling supply chain. 

Previously, the EBRD has helped Şişecam to increase its glass collection rates. Under a pilot funded by the government of Spain in 2013, Şişecam introduced thousands of bottle banks in several Turkish cities, including Istanbul, Ankara, Antalya, Edirne, Bursa, Konya, Aydın, Adana and Diyarbakır, and launched an awareness-raising campaign to encourage households to recycle glass. The success of this initiative paved the way for a 30-million-euro loan from the EBRD which financed the acquisition of new bottle banks, collection vehicles and glass bottle crushers, among other investments.