This report summarises the discussions in the Working Group on Credit Guarantee Schemes in Central, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe (CESEE), established under the European Bank Coordination Initiative (EBCI, Vienna Initiative 2).
Credit guarantee schemes (CGSs) are used in many countries to alleviate the constraints facing small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in accessing finance. They can play a catalysing role in emerging economies where the SME financing gap is generally wider than in developed economies. In times of financial downturns CGSs can be a part of a counter-cyclical public policy toolkit to support lending to SMEs. Public sector involvement is usually judged to be necessary to supply guarantee products in sufficient amounts.