European Bank supports Oasis (33) with $35.5M loan

aqaba red sea
(File photo: Jordan News)
AMMAN — The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development recently announced the provision of a long-term "high-quality guaranteed" loan amounting to $35.5 million for the benefit of Oasis (33) Development Company for Multifunctional Development.اضافة اعلان

The bank confirmed that the loan will be part of a syndicated facility, to be used to build upon the bank's initial deal with the company and support the continuous development of the "Ayla Marina" village.

Oasis (33) Development Company for Multifunctional Development is a real estate company established in 2008 by "Ayla Development Oasis," responsible for developing, constructing, and operating the "Ayla Marina" village, including three hotels and retail stores within the "Ayla" Oasis in Aqaba. The company is owned by the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority and a coalition of private investment companies, Al-Ghad reported.

The project includes extending the current debt repayment deadlines for the company, completing the construction of the Pulse Hotel, currently being developed by the company as part of the broader Ayla Oasis renewal project, spanning over 4.3 million square meters.

According to a report released by the bank on March 20, the project aims to enhance human capital and address critical gaps in hospitality sector skills in Jordan by offering the first work-based educational program in Jordan to support tourism, hospitality, and retail sectors.

Additionally, it involves collaborating with the Jordanian government to develop a work-based educational system in this field, along with supporting green economy efforts in the tourism sector.

The report emphasized the importance of this loan in developing policy dialogue to facilitate the integration of work-based learning programs in Jordan, as well as setting standards by supporting the company in maintaining higher standards regarding gender equality and economic inclusion in line with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development's gender equality smart standards.

Furthermore, regarding financial commitments to maintaining environmental standards and promoting sustainability, the majority of electricity used in the "Ayla Oasis" project is generated from solar and photovoltaic power plants with a total capacity of 7.6 megawatts. Facilities have already been established and are operational.

Additionally, "Ayla" utilizes treated sewage water provided by AWC and treated groundwater through reverse osmosis, with wastewater being discharged into the sewage network, treated, and some retrieved for irrigation purposes.

The report also confirmed that as part of the company's environmental commitments, it has an ongoing program to monitor biodiversity focusing on birds and marine species. The company collaborates with various non-governmental organizations and stakeholders in monitoring water quality, preserving biodiversity, and waste management aspects.

Regarding the company's social standards commitments, the report highlighted its efforts to identify additional measures for improvement and enhancement, incorporating them into the environmental and social action plan (ESAP). This includes developing tourism and hospitality practices, continuing to improve human resource policies and procedures regarding gender-based violence and sexual harassment, ensuring freedom of association and labor dispute mechanisms.

Moreover, a food safety program will be developed, including good internal practices, and project monitoring will continue through the annual environmental and social report submitted to the bank.

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