In April 2019, the EIB and the European Commission announced nearly EUR 1 billion of financing for the agriculture and bioeconomy sectors across Europe. The financing, channelled through intermediary banks, includes a window with favourable lending conditions for young farmers financing.
The programme loan has enabled a faster approval of operations, as it has been nearly fully committed within six months. As of beginning of December 2019, 95% of the financing has been approved for bank intermediated lending in Italy (€350 million signed with four banks), France (€375 million signed with two banks) and in Greece (€200 million approved for two banks).
One more operation is in the pipeline, namely an intermediated loan of €20 million in Croatia.
These loans fill an important financing gap and all have a window of 10 to 30% for young farmers. Today only €30 million from the overall envelope are still available for lending. But the EIB is planning to step up this type of financing for young farmers, possibly blending it with EU structural funds, in line with its joint ‘Young Farmers’ initiative with DG AGRI.
“The EU agriculture programme loan has been an important financing tool for the EIB and for banks in support of the agriculture sector. It is addressing the lack of access to finance of farmers, especially the next generation of farmers, and passing on favourable lending conditions to them. Given the high interest for this initiative, we are considering launching another agriculture programme loan working in close collaboration with the European Commission”, says EIB Vice-President Andrew McDowell, responsible for agriculture and bioeconomy.
Commissioner for agriculture, Janusz Wojciechowski commented: “I welcome the success of the €1 billion loan programme launched by the EIB for young farmers. Since April 95% of financing has been approved in several Member States. Investing in agriculture and supporting the investments of young farmers is critical to make farming more competitive, more innovative and environment-friendly. Investments will be instrumental to the effective contribution of agriculture to the EU Green Deal.”
More information on the EIB’s activities in agriculture
Survey by fi-compass on financial needs and access to finance of EU agricultural enterprises