EUR 400 million available to encourage businesses in the three Benelux countries to invest in sustainable projects.
Loans will be available as of September.
Companies selected for their sustainable impact will benefit from an interest rate discount of 0.3% thanks to EIB backing.
ING and the European Investment Bank (EIB) are making EUR 400 million available for investments by business enterprises in the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg. For businesses in these countries, the EIB’s involvement means that they benefit from a lower interest rate. Loans will specifically be focused on supporting business enterprises making investments in sustainable projects.
As part of the agreement, the EIB will provide a EUR 200 million loan under advantageous pricing conditions to ING. The bank will pass through this benefit to its customers and will double the loan amount, bringing the total credit injection for the sector to EUR 400 million. ING will use the available funding for its sustainability lending program that it has rolled out across the Benelux since 2018. The EIB loan helps to further accelerate this program.
“This is one of the ways in which the EIB, in cooperation with ING, is offering business enterprises a helping hand," says Heinz Olbers, EIB Director for lending operations in the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg. “Apart from increasing the availability of finance to businesses, we pass on the EIB’s advantageous funding rate, due to its AAA credit rating, to provide cheaper loans. ING is a leading bank when it comes to sustainability, which is very high on the EIB’s agenda as well. We share ING’s goals in focusing on green investments and are glad to continue our fruitful collaboration.”
The facility amount is earmarked to sustainable investments, for example in the area of (i) the transition from fossil energy sources to solar and wind, (ii) energy-efficient real estate for own use, (iii) circular economy and (iv) electric transportation. The interest rate discount is only available under specific eligibility criteria, as set by the EIB and ING. Entrepreneurs are encouraged to contact their relationship manager or client service team to check whether their project meets these criteria.
“This new loan agreement with the EIB helps us in encouraging our clients to invest in sustainable projects. There is still a lot to be done to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement and the related Dutch Climate Agreement. With this loan we want to motivate and reward our clients to accelerate their sustainability agenda”, says Annemein Kolk, Head of Midcorporate Clients at ING Netherlands.
Jean-Pierre Verbeken, Head of Midcorporate Clients at ING Belgium: “Since we started our sustainability program in the Benelux, the subject has become a key topic in our dialogue with clients. We believe that incorporating a sustainability strategy will become essential for every successful company and our ambition is to support our clients in future-proofing their business models. The Loan agreement with the EIB helps us to do so.”
The new financing program will be launched as of September. Half of this pan-Benelux facility will be available for Dutch companies, the other half is available for companies in Belgium and Luxembourg. Total investments per sustainable project may not exceed EUR 25 million. Each loan eligible for a favourable interest rate is capped at EUR 10 million. In the Netherlands, the EIB program will be made available for sustainable investments by business clients as an alternative to green certificate financing, made possible by ING Groenbank. In Belgium and Luxembourg, the EIB program will be made available to business clients, taking into account that in these countries, a comparable green certificate from the government is not available.
This new agreement marks the start of a new round of financial support provided via ING to business enterprises in the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg. Since 2009, ING has provided EIB-backed financing for enterprises in the Benelux for a total amount of EUR 1,850 million including this new facility.
More information about ING’s sustainability program, the joint lending program with the EIB and contact details can be found here:
ING is a global financial institution with a strong European base, offering banking services through its operating company ING Bank. The purpose of ING Bank is empowering people to stay a step ahead in life and in business. ING Bank’s more than 53,000 employees offer retail and wholesale banking services to customers in over 40 countries.
ING Group shares are listed on the exchanges of Amsterdam (INGA NA, INGA.AS), Brussels and on the New York Stock Exchange (ADRs: ING US, ING.N).
Sustainability forms an integral part of ING’s strategy evidenced by ING’s ranking as Leader in the banks industry group by Sustainalytics and ‘A’ rating in MSCI’s ratings universe. ING Group shares are included in major sustainability and Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) index products of leading providers STOXX, Morningstar and FTSE Russell.
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