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The European Investment Bank (EIB) is lending EUR 40 million to Bank of Georgia, the country’s largest bank, to finance investment projects promoted by SMEs and midcap companies.  

The EIB loan will support the implementation of projects important for the development of Georgia’s private sector as well as undertakings in the areas of social and economic infrastructure, climate change mitigation and adaptation. As a result, the operation is expected to contribute to job creation and maintenance.

EIB Vice-President Wilhelm Molterer, stated: “A well-developed and robust SME sector is crucial for economic growth and employment. This EIB loan, like similar loans the EIB has extended across the Eastern Partnership countries, will facilitate access to finance for the most vulnerable group of companies – SMEs and midcaps.”

We are very pleased to start cooperation with the European Investment Bank, especially in the light of Georgia’s increasing economic and political ties with the EU, which has become the country’s largest trading partner. The euro’s influence on the lari has significantly increased in recent years, with the lari effectively becoming a euro proxy, as a result of which we are now focused on raising euro funding and trying to shift US dollar loans into euros. This EUR 40 million loan, earmarked for financing our micro and SME customers, will enable us to further increase our competitiveness in the sector and support growth and job creation” said Irakli Gilauri, CEO of Bank of Georgia.

The operation brings the volume of signatures for the benefit of SMEs and midcaps in Georgia to EUR 150 million. Total EIB lending commitments in Georgia amount to EUR 530 million and concern a number of other priority sectors including transport, water and energy as well as support for SMEs and midcaps.