Kyrgyz Republic: Plato-01/Bishkek
Unlawful termination of work, withheld compensation
$6 million Quasi-Equity Investment
IFC has an active project with T.C. Plato Meslek Yuksekokulu (Plato), a Turkish private education provider which started operations in 2009 with two vocational education institutes; Plato College for Higher Education in Istanbul, Turkey and Plato University of Management and Design in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. IFC’s investment in Plato aims to support the company’s expansion in Turkey, Central Asia (Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan), and in the Middle East/North Africa region (likely Egypt and/or other countries depending on opportunities). The total project cost is estimated at US$ 12 million and the IFC’s investment is quasi-equity of US$ 6 million.
The complaint was lodged by a former employee of the Plato University in Bishkek. The complaint raises concerns around the circumstances of the employee’s termination in the context of the liquidation of the University in Bishkek.
CAO found all the complaint eligible for further assessment in April 16, 2015. During the assessment, the parties did not agree to engage in a CAO facilitated dispute resolution process. Hence, in accordance with CAO's Operational Guidelines, the case was referred to CAO Compliance for appraisal of IFC's environmental and social performance with regard to the project. The case was referred to the CAO Compliance function on June 26, 2015.
While CAO has identified questions as to IFC’s appraisal and supervision of its investment in the Company, given the nature of the complaint, CAO finds that a compliance investigation is not the appropriate response in this instance. CAO's view is that, absent aggravating circumstances, disputes between an employer and individual employees around issues of pay and benefits will not raise substantial concerns regarding the E&S outcomes of an IFC investment such that would merit a CAO compliance investigation. As a result, in accordance with its Operational Guidelines, CAO has decided to close this case.
CAO's Compliance appraisal report, providing a full description of CAO's decision with regard to this case, is available under "View Documents" below. As of July 29, 2015, CAO has closed the case with no further action.
Status update as of August 03, 2015