IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is supporting Georgia’s largest private healthcare services company, EVEX, as it increases access to high-quality, affordable healthcare services for more than a million people across the country.
IFC will provide a $25 million senior loan to EVEX, supporting the company in financing its healthcare service development program and introducing new services in existing hospitals. That is considered key in Georgia, where many people still lack access to quality and specialized health services, like those provided by EVEX. The company runs 35 hospitals, nine district and 28 express ambulatory clinics across the country.
"I am very pleased to announce the successful completion of an important long-term funding transaction and to start our co-operation with IFC, supporting the sustainable development of the Georgian healthcare sector," said Nikoloz Gamkrelidze, the company’s CEO. "This loan from IFC will help us to renovate hospitals and develop new services, contributing to the successful implementation of our strategy."
Private sector companies are a key part of Georgia's healthcare system, providing more than 80 percent of the health services in the country. The government reimburses private and public hospitals for services they provide to patients, under the state's universal health coverage.
"The private sector plays an increasingly important role in healthcare delivery in Georgia," said Jan van Bilsen, IFC Regional Manager for the South Caucasus. "This investment is part of our strategy to support private participation in this sector, providing innovative, efficient healthcare services that are affordable for a wide section of the population."
While Georgia’s total healthcare expenditure - at 9 percent of gross domestic product - is high compared to other emerging countries, it is largely spent on pharmaceuticals, not health services.
The project is part of a larger effort by IFC to support economic development in Georgia, which became an IFC member in 1995. Since then, IFC has provided more than $1.2 billion in long-term financing, of which $436 million was mobilized from partners. That support covered 55 projects in in sectors such as financial services, agribusiness, manufacturing, and infrastructure. In addition, IFC has supported around $315 million in trade through its trade finance program, and implemented a number of advisory projects focused on developing the private sector.
Healthcare Group, listed on the London Stock Exchange, a subsidiary of BGEO Group PLC.