• €20 million has been provided to the State Export-Import Bank of Ukraine (Ukreximbank) to help local businesses overcome challenges and disruptions caused by the war in Ukraine.
  • The operation involves a parallel cross-currency swap made possible in collaboration with the Currency Exchange Fund (TCX). This approach supports long-term lending in Ukrainian hryvnia. 
  • The transaction benefits from a €2 million grant from the European Union, which makes it possible to offer more affordable loan conditions.

As part of EU efforts to aid economic recovery, the European Investment Bank (EIB, the EU bank) has disbursed €20 million to the State Export-Import Bank of Ukraine (Ukreximbank). This local-currency financing aims to support Ukrainian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and is the last tranche of a €300 million debt facility implemented by Ukreximbank.

The funds will be made available with the support of a parallel cross-currency swap in Ukrainian hryvnia and will be on-lent via Ukreximbank to improve SMEs’ resilience in wartime conditions, enabling them to continue their economic activities and meet the essential needs of the population.

The European Union is supporting this transaction with a €2 million grant, which will help improve the terms and conditions of the funding made available to SMEs. This EU contribution is a part of the European Union’s broader EU4Business initiative, which aims to foster SME growth by improving access to finance, providing business development services and promoting better business regulations.

The operation was made possible by the EIB’s investment in TCX, a development finance institution set up to protect borrowers in emerging and frontier markets from currency risk. TCX offers derivative instruments in emerging and frontier currencies that transform hard currency borrowing into fixed local-currency obligations.

EIB Vice-President Teresa Czerwińska, responsible for the Bank's operations in Ukraine, said: “In these extraordinarily challenging times, it’s crucial to enhance vital access to finance for war-affected SMEs, the backbone of the Ukrainian economy, to meet their business recovery needs and support the private sector. The EIB remains dedicated to ensuring Ukrainian SMEs have the support needed for the country’s recovery. We are grateful for the backing by the European Commission, our primary partner in this endeavour, and delighted to strengthen our cooperation with Ukreximbank.”

EU Ambassador to Ukraine Katarína Mathernová said: “This €20 million disbursement from the European Investment Bank, backed by a €2 million EU grant, is crucial for aiding Ukrainian SMEs affected by the war. SMEs are vital to the Ukrainian economy, and the European Union has been redirecting assistance to support them since the very first days of Russia’s full-scale war of aggression against Ukraine. Ukraine’s candidate country status creates new economic opportunities, and the European Union is committed to helping Ukraine seize them through initiatives such as EU4Business.”

CEO of TCX Ruurd Brouwer added: “We are grateful for the opportunity to support the EIB and the European Union in realising this transaction. Access to sustainable and predictable hryvnia funding is critical for the resilience of SME borrowers in Ukraine. Especially now.”

Member of the Management Board of Ukreximbank Oleksandr Schur said: “Today, Ukrainian businesses are undergoing a painful forced transformation. On one hand, European integration processes promise prospects for development in foreign markets and a significant reduction of barriers. On the other hand, a full-scale war has seriously impacted the country’s economy. The loan provided by the EIB signifies a successful partnership between Ukreximbank and the EU bank. We are grateful that the European Union and its bank, the EIB, continue to support us during these challenging times, as this partnership enables us to continue assisting Ukrainian small and medium-sized businesses, which have been the hardest hit by the war.”

EIB Group continuous support for Ukrainian SMEs

The EIB and its subsidiary responsible for small and medium-sized businesses the European Investment Fund (EIF) — together the EIB Group — made over €1.6 billion available to support the Ukrainian private sector, particularly SMEs, through the credit lines and partial portfolio guarantees before the war.

The EIB Group (backed by the European Commission) is planning to launch an EU4Business Guarantee Facility in 2023 to support small and medium businesses in the Eastern Partnership countries, including Ukraine. The new facility will be implemented in partnership with local financial intermediaries and amounts to €40 million, €30 million of which is expected to be dedicated to Ukraine. The remainder will be made available to banks in Moldova, Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan. The facility is expected to unlock €500 million in loans in the selected countries, including €375 million in Ukraine.

Background information 

EIB Global is the EIB Group’s specialised arm devoted to increasing the impact of international partnerships and development finance outside the European Union. EIB Global is designed to foster strong, focused partnership within Team Europe and as part of the EU Global Gateway strategy, alongside fellow development finance institutions and civil society. EIB Global brings the Group closer to local people, companies and institutions through our offices across the world