World Bank Authorizes $25, 000, 000 Loan for Israel’s Potash Industry

The World Bank today authorized a loan equivalent to $25, 000, 000 to Israel, to finance a huge expansion of facilities for producing potash and bromine from Dead Sea brine, and the construction of new facilities for production of bromine chemicals and magnesite. The loan was issued to Mifalei Yam Hamelah, B. M. (Dead Sea Works, Ltd.) at Beersheba.

The executive directors of the World Bank approved the loan, which is partial financing of an expansion program to cost eventually $72, 000, 000. In addition to the World Bank loan, the Israeli company will obtain funds from the proceeds of a new share issue of 27, 000, 000 Israeli pounds ($15, 000, 000), from retained earnings and from other borrowings.

The shares will be registered on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, and this offering will be underwritten by a syndicate of Israel banks, headed by Bank Leumi Le-Israel. The loan agreement between the World Bank and the Dead Sea Works, Ltd., will be signed after the share issue has been taken up. This is expected early in July. The loan will be guaranteed by the Government of Israel.

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