The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has signed a €140m loan for the expansion of Antalya Airport on Türkiye’s southwest coast.

This capex bridge loan – signed with operator Fraport TAV Antalya Yatirim, Yapim ve Isletme (FTA) – will facilitate greater cross-border connectivity between Europe, Asia and other destinations. It also marks AIIB’s inaugural non-sovereign backed financing transaction in the airport industry.

Once completed, the extension of Antalya Airport will improve the utilisation of existing runway capacity and provide higher-quality terminal infrastructure while easing transportation constraints.

“Antalya Airport is a gateway to tourism in Türkiye,” said Konstantin Limitovskiy, AIIB’s vice president for investment operations (Region 2: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Central Asia, East Asia, West Asia, Europe, Africa and Latin America). “This project is aligned with AIIB’s Transport Sector Strategy and thematic priorities of green infrastructure, connectivity and regional cooperation and private capital mobilisation. This is AIIB’s first solid entry into the sustainable aviation market and it will boost the tourism-dependent economic health of Antalya region locally. It will also contribute to Türkiye’s economic recovery from recent financial shocks and local natural disasters while enhancing global cross-border connectivity.”

AIIB’s financing package is provided in partnership with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) (collectively the multilateral development banks (MDBs). In addition to the improvement of Antalya Airport’s operational efficiencies, this collaboration will support the adoption of international environmental, social and governance (ESG) standards and climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts.

FTA, a joint venture between global airport operators Fraport AG Frankfurt Airport Services Worldwide and TAV Airports Holding, will meet the MDBs’ ESG standards by committing to develop capacity for inclusive and gender-responsive procurement with the goal of increasing women’s participation at the contractor level. The project will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by introducing low-carbon measures in compliance with LEED green building standards, which AIIB will also monitor as part of the project’s intermediate indicators. These measures will also include the construction of an on-site solar farm and other various energy efficiency initiatives, which will rank the Antalya Airport among the top best carbon management airports in the world, as it aims to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

AIIB has been active in Türkiye since 2018 and has committed over $3.9bn through 19 projects covering the water, energy, urban, transport and healthcare sectors across the Turkish market.

Image: Antalya Airport/ AIIB