• EUR 25 million loan for financing 445 small and medium-sized companies in Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • The loan supports 4,450 jobs in all sectors of the economy and creates job opportunities for young people
  • The EIB will strengthen its presence in the region by opening a new Regional Desk in Sarajevo starting from January 2019

The European Investment Bank (EIB) will provide EUR 25 million loan to Raiffeisen Leasing Bosnia and Herzegovina, supporting new lending to small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) in the country. Raiffeisen Leasing will use the loan to finance investment projects and working capital of companies in the industry, tourism, agriculture, services sectors, encouraging in particular investments promoting youth employment under the European Youth Employment and Training for the Western Balkans (“EYET”) initiative. Local authorities will also benefit of the loans to finance investments in the fields of environmental protection, healthcare and education. According to EIB estimates, the loan will support 4,450 jobs (including existing jobs and new jobs created) and approximately 445 SMEs.

An agreement to lend a first tranche of EUR 15 million was signed today in Sarajevo by Matteo Rivellini, Head of Division at EIB in charge of Western Balkans, Croatia and Slovenia and  Karlheinz Dobnigg, CEO of Raiffeisen Bank Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Mr Rivellini said: “I am very pleased to sign today a loan to support local small and medium entrepreneurs and to create more jobs in Bosnia and Herzegovina. This loan will also sustain youth employment in the country, thus addressing root causes of potential youth migration. This is the fourth credit line we sign with Raiffeisen Leasing Bosnia and Herzegovina, building on the very successful cooperation developed over the years between EIB and Raiffeisen group in the country and in the Western Balkans region. The signature comes at a pivotal time for the Bank’s commitment to Bosnia and Herzegovina: starting from January 2019, the EIB will place one Desk Officer in Sarajevo to further enhance the European support to Bosnia and Herzegovina and foster growth, cohesion and connectivity in the country and in the whole region.”

Mr Dobnigg said: “I am pleased that by signing this contract we continue our long term successful cooperation between Raiffeisen Group and EIB. The agreed transaction of 25 million EUR will enable financing not only of significant investment projects in the country but also of small and medium scale projects that are crucial for the economic growth. By this credit line we will support the projects in the fields of environment protection, industry, health and education, which also fully reflects our sustainability strategy. We are committed to sustainable entrepreneurship as well as to the creation of wealth by establishing a framework of sustainable finance”

SMEs are the backbone of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s economy. Raiffeisen Bank and Raiffeisen Leasing have long been important partners of these businesses. The cooperation between EIB and Raiffeisen group in Bosnia and Herzegovina started in 2005. Since then, the EIB has provided six loans to the two entities of the group in Bosnia and Herzegovina – three each to Raiffeisen Bank and Raiffeisen Leasing - totaling EUR 130 million.

To date the EIB has supported lending to SMEs in the country through a number of local banks for a total of EUR 710 million. The commercial banks are passing the favorable financing conditions offered by the EIB onto their clients. This support remains crucial in helping SMEs and Mid-Caps withstand the challenging financial and economic conditions in the region. Since the start of its activities in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the EIB has provided over EUR 2.4 billion financing across the sectors of the economy, especially supporting investments in the transport and SME sectors, but also those in water and sewage, energy and healthcare sectors.

Support for SMEs is one of the four key priorities of the EIB Group on a global scale. In 2017, the EIB Group provided EUR 29.6 billion in financing for SMEs across the world, supporting 285,800 companies  which employ 3.9 million people.




Milica Kulić, +381658991110