EIB increases its support for industrial and agricultural SMEs in Bulgaria
- Release date: 26 September 2013
- Reference: 2013-149-EN
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The European Investment Bank (EIB) is lending EUR 50 million to CIBANK to finance projects promoted by small and medium-sized enterprises and mid-cap companies in Bulgaria. EIB funds will support projects across the whole country, significantly supporting employment.
Luca Lazzaroli, the EIB’s Director for Lending in South East Europe, commented: “The loan signed today addresses the key lending priority of the EIB – to improve the extremely difficult financing conditions for SMEs and mid-caps in the current continuing economic crisis. Better availability of long-term financing, provided in cooperation with CIBANK, a well-established partner of the EIB, is crucial for further development of this sector, which is the backbone of the Bulgarian economy and the main driver of growth and employment. Furthermore, in light of its contribution to employment generation and economic diversification in rural areas, part of the loan will be dedicated to lending to agricultural and agribusiness SMEs.”
This intermediated loan is being provided under the Joint IFI Action Plan for Growth in Central and South Eastern Europe, which is focused on providing better access to long-term finance for Europe's SMEs in order to mitigate the effects of the financial crisis. The funds will support growth by enhancing long-term competitiveness through increased availability of long-term credit.
This credit line is a continuation of the excellent cooperation of the EIB with CIBANK. In the past, the EIB has provided two other intermediated loans to this financial intermediary totalling EUR 55 million. These EIB funds have been successfully allocated to the Bulgarian SMEs, who have benefited from improved interest rates and longer lending maturities.