With a population of 77 million inhabitants, GDP at USD 800bn (making it the 18th largest economy in the world in 2014) and annual per capita income higher than USD 10,000, Turkey is experiencing remarkable economic and social development. It is an emerging power in the Euro-Mediterranean region, as well as a member of the OECD and “G20” Economic Forum (Presidency in 2015), and a candidate for EU membership. The country is located in a strategic position at the crossroads of Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

In order to meet the challenges posed by employ- ment, energy and the environment, combined with marked regional disparities, Turkey has embarked on a path of more inclusive and low-carbon growth, fully integrating the place of people in society.

The country ratified the Kyoto Protocol in 2009, has adopted a strategy to combat climate change, and renewed its commitment to sustainable development at the United Nations Rio+20 Conference.

The cooperation between France and Turkey is based on a long-standing relationship, close consultation othe major issues of international and regional agendas, and significant levels of trade. A framework agreement on bilateral cooperation for environmental protection was signed in 1996.


Organization of the 1st W20 Summit in Istanbul on 16 and 17 October 2015


The Women 20 (W20) is an engagement group that has been formed under the Turkish term presidency of the G20. The mandate for the W20 includes helping achieve progress on the G20 recent commitments on “women’s full economic and social participation” made in the Los Cabos Leaders’ Declaration in 2012, “women’s financial inclusion and education” in the St. Petersburg Leaders’ Declaration in 2013, and “reducing the gap in participation rates between men and women in our countries by 25% by 2025 (taking into account national circumstances)” in the Brisbane Leaders’ Declaration in 2014.

Three Turkish NGOs (KAGIDER, KADEM and TIKAD) have been selected to organize the first summit of the W20 that will be held in Istanbul on October 16th and 17th. This summit should identify priority issues on which the W20 will work in the coming months and propose a roadmap and an actions plan. The conclusions of the W20 will be presented at the G20 summit which will be held in Antalya on November 15th and 16th 2015.

To stimulate discussions of the attending delegations to the W20 summit, the 3 NGOs organizers have produced a "W20 Priority Paper" which is available at the following address: http://w20turkey.org/w20-priorities/
They have also launched a public consultation (conducted by Ipsos) to enable worldwide citizens to make the W20 know about the topics they consider as priority to contribute to the economic empowerment of women and their full participation in society.
We kindly invite you to click the link below and take a few minutes to answer this survey (available in English and Turkish): http://o2dconline.ipsos.com.tr/PANG0028_1

The exhibition "60 solutions to climate change" at the Palais de France as part of "European Heritage Days"


Visit of the French Palace within the context of “European heritage Day”, Saturday 19th September.

As part of the “European Heritage Day”, in which France is at the origin and which is now present in over 50 countries in Europe, the French Palace is opening its doors to the French and Turkish public and, also, to historical places enthusiasts. We testify in this way the belonging of the French palace to Istanbul’s heritage.


With the approach of “Paris Climat 2015”s conference, these days which will this year title “heritage, a future history”, will give us the opportunity to question ourselves about environmental and climatic challenges. We have, therefore, elected the theme “Green Palace” and, in addition to the visit of the palace’s areas, we will illustrate the concrete measures adopted at the French Palace in favor of the environment.

An exhibition of the French great photographer Yann Arthus-Bertrand "60 solutions to climate change", made available by the French Development Agency (AFD), will also be presented on this occasion.

Visitors will exceptionally have access to the French Palace (lounges and gardens), to the French institute of Anatolian Studies (IFEA) and to its scientific heritage and, as well, to the church of Saint Louis.

For safety purposes, the number of visitors is limited by time slot from 11:00 to 17:00.

Access to the French Palace (Nur-i-Ziya Sokak n10 Beyoglu) is by registration only. Each member of a family should subscribe (except for children under 12).

An ID will be requested at the entrance of the French Palace.

Possible assisted visit in Turkish/French/English from Yeditepe university’s students. One French visit guided will be organized at 3pm with a main researcher’s partner to the IFEA.

Ps: Young children are welcome but strollers are prohibited inside as well as cigarettes, food, drinks and large handbags.

 For more information on the European Heritage Days .

AFD: a new contribution to the development of transport in Izmir


With over 4 million inhabitants, Izmir is today the third largest city of Turkey. It is also the second largest Turkish habour and occupies the third place in terms of industrialization and economic development. In this context, the management of urban transport is a major issue for this city in full urban expansion in a long bay of the Aegean Sea. Izmir has consequently developed a strategic plan to improve the quality of life of its citizens and to promote sustainable urban development. Especially on the transport field, the city has declined a vast public transportation program aimed at reducing traffic congestion and improving access to the historical city center and to public facilities for residents living in the outskirts of town.

 On the 13th of August 2015, by signing an agreement to finance the purchase of new metro cars with the Metropolitan Municipality of Izmir AFD, has again positioned itself as an important partner in the sustainable development of the city. The new loan complements the first two funding to the municipality, respectively, in 2013 for the purchase of new travelers’ ships, and in 2014 for the construction of two new tram lines. As the previous two loans, the new one, amounting to 71.4 million euros, representing the total cost of the project, is also subject to the co-financing with others financial institutions as IFC, EBRD and ING Bank (with guaranteed MIGA).

This new founding for the purchase of 85 new metro cars in order to respond to the needs of the Izmir metro extension will increase the underground passage frequency; create interconnections with other transportation ways (boat, tram, bus, private transport...); improve comfort of passengers; and save an average of 10kt of CO2 per year for 25 years.

Through three financing for transport projects of the Municipality of Izmir, AFD had provided to the municipality a coherent and comprehensive support on all of its transport system and urban transportation management. AFD has also strengthened this partnership in terms of technical cooperation by promoting the transport model of Izmir at the Mediterranean scale. In collaboration with the Centre for Mediterranean Integration, AFD organized the closing workshop of the Seminar on sustainable transport in Izmir (November 2014). This Seminar, which was part of an extensive work program having led to the organization of several workshops in different Mediterranean cities for three years, had the opportunity to highlight for the first time the exemplary model of Izmir.

Workshop on women employment and childcare facilities, 3 July 2015


In the framework of its exchanges with various Turkish associations working on the themes of Women rights, their role in society and their participation to the economical and political life in Turkey, the French Consulate organized, in collaboration with the French Agency of Development (AFD), a workshop named: ‘The access and maintain of women in the labor market: which role of childcare facilities?”. This workshop has held on 3 July 2015 in the French Palace in Istanbul and brought together more than 50 guests coming from the political area (as Mrs Özlem Zengin, Deputy member of AKP and Mrs Filiz Kerestecioğlu, Deputy member of HDP), from the municipal sector (Disctricts Municipalities of Beylikdüzü, Büyükçekmece and Zeytinburnu) and from the associative and economical organizations.

This workshop was the occasion of bringing together the main Turkish actors involved today on the theme of Women rights and comparing the childcare policies in Turkey and in France.

The workshop has been inaugurated by the interventions of Mrs Muriel Domenach, French Consule General, and of Mrs Laetitia Dufay, Deputy Head of AFD. Mrs Muriel Domenach reminded the strong commitment of the Consulate to the ongoing discussions on Women rights in Turkey. She added that, in those discussions, “The theme of childcare facilities has appeared us as a key element because it determines the women’s autonomy and in particular their capacity to work. The women employment is one of the priorities of G20 whose presidency is held by Turkey this year (…). My idea, as during our previous meeting, is to seek the fields of convergence among women from different cultural horizons.
Mrs Laetitia Dufay introduced briefly the approach of AFD on Gender equality in work and in particular the research conducted during the past two years by the agency on female employment and childcare facilities in Turkey, with the aim of identifying projects to finance and to support. She wished that this workshop is the occasion of opening new forms of cooperation between Turkey and France.

Two presentations followed the opening speeches:

- A presentation by Mrs. Meltem Aran (Director of the Turkish independent research firm Development Analytics), on the early childcare facilities in Turkey, based on the results of a study commissioned by AFD. The presentation underlined the difficulties that families face about the access to collective childcare facilities: weaknesses of supply of public and private kindergartens, lack of interest of companies in investing in the set-up of kindergartens toward their employees’ children (despite their legislative obligation), high level of current prices of private crèches.

- A presentation by Mrs. Yildiz Kuruoglu (AFD), of the French model of childcare facilities of the young children (0-3 ages). We can note that the French model is set-up on a voluntary public policy of development of facilities in order to conciliate different objectives: familial goals (support the birth rate and conciliate personal and professional life), socio-economic goals (increase of the female employment rate and facilitate women's integration into the country's professional and economic life) and socio-educative goals (full development of the child). Its efficiency results in particular from a plural offer which covers more than 70% of the demand and from a female employment rate (15-64 ages) greater than 60%.

The participants unanimously pointed out the necessity of developing the childcare facilities to allow mothers to access the labor market – if they want – and assure their autonomy. Discussions continued in the need of proliferation and diversity of childcare facilities, the importance of funding methods, the necessity of clarifying the role of different actors and the fact that the interest and the safety of child must always come first than anything else.

Documents available:

  1. French model of childcare facilities of the young children (only in Turkish)
  2. When Can Work Performed by Women Become a Factor in Their Empowerment?_A question of development_synthese of AFD studies and research_june 2015

Experience exchange on the sustainable practices in the banking sector


In association with the AFD Istanbul Agency, Turkey UN Global Compact has organized a 3-day study trip to Paris for the members of its working group “Banks and Financial Institutions”. The Group meets regularly for working on the CSR issues within the banking sector and sustainable financing. AFD is herself a member of the UNGC network since 2004.

On the first of June, the Turkish delegation composed of representatives of 7 banks (including 6 counterparts of AFD Group : Garanti Bank, Odeabank, TEB, TSKB, Is Bank, Kalkinma, Ziraat Bankasi) was received at the AFD Headquarters for meeting with different interlocutors from several departments and Proparco in order to discuss the following topics: the implications of the COP 21, green financing from AFD -and in particular the green credit lines granted to local financial institutions through the SUNREF program (Sustainable Use of Natural Resources and Energy Finance, program carried out by AFD’s Financial Institutions and Private Sector Division) – as well as the management of E&S risks of the projects funded by AFD Group. The participation of Engie (former GDF Suez) to this working day enabled a French company to share her experience in the field of sustainable development.

This working day was an opportunity to reaffirm by the AFD the priority given to the financing of the fight against the climate change to our Turkish banking counterparts and to illustrate the French experience and expertise on sustainable development.

The Study Trip of the Turkish Delegation has continued on the 2nd and the 3rd of June and has been an opportunity to meet with the players of the French Banking sector (Société générale, Crédit Agricole and BNPP) in order to complete the exchanges initiated with the AFD.

Energy efficiency in SMEs


Following its signature in 2011, project KOBIENVER for the technical assistance to KOSGEB regarding the implementation of its strategy to support energy efficiency in SMEs showed some significant progress on several components.

Among them, awareness rising and sample selection of SMEs started in Bursa on the 6th of May 2014 in a conference organized by KOSGEB. The enclosed booklet (in Turkish) was shared with participants to disclose the project broadly.

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