EIB and Unicaja: EUR 400 million for SMEs
The European Investment Bank (EIB) has signed a EUR 200 million loan agreement with Unicaja Banco for financing the investment projects and working capital needs of SMEs and midcaps (medium-sized companies with up to 3000 employees). Unicaja Banco will match this EIB loan with the same amount, meaning that a total of EUR 400 million will be made available to the small business sector. The agreement was signed today by EIB Vice-President Magdalena Álvarez and Unicaja Banco’s CEO, Braulio Medel.
The loan will carry more favourable interest rate and maturity terms than alternative sources of credit and Unicaja Banco will pass these on to the end borrowers.
The funds will be mainly used to finance projects carried out by SMEs and midcaps in the industrial and service sectors, including investment in tourism, environmental protection and research, development and innovation. The loan will therefore have a positive impact on economic activity and employment and will also help to boost the productivity and competitiveness of the beneficiary firms and foster the rational use of energy and diversification of energy sources. The projects eligible for financing will mostly be located in Spain.
This is the second SME financing loan of this type that the Bank has signed with Unicaja in the past three years and follows on from other EIB credit lines opened with this borrower. The two institutions are working hard together to facilitate the access of SMEs and midcaps to finance, which is crucial in the current economic circumstances.
As an EU objective, supporting SMEs is one of the EIB’s investment priorities. This loan comes under the EIB and Unicaja’s policy of assisting small businesses in the current economic crisis by facilitating their access to credit with long maturities, flexible disbursement schedules and low interest rates, so fostering job creation.