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EUR 20m for SMEs in Montenegro under the Western Balkans Enterprise and Innovation Facility

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    Date: 16 January 2017

The European Investment Fund (EIF) and Crnogorska Komercijalna Banka (CKB), have signed a guarantee agreement to support Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) in Montenegro via a Guarantee Facility under the Western Balkans Enterprise Development and Innovation Facility (WB EDIF).

The Western Balkans Guarantee Facility agreement aims to facilitate access to finance for SMEs in Montenegro by providing credit coverage on a EUR 20 million portfolio of SME loans with attractive conditions over the next two years.

Commenting on the transaction EIF’s Guarantees, Securitisation & Microfinance Director Alessandro Tappi said: “We are pleased to be signing the first guarantee agreement under the second phase of the Western Balkans Guarantee Facility in Montenegro with our long-standing partner CKB. The guarantee will enhance SMEs’ access to finance and support them in their role as one of the most important growth drivers for the local economy.”

Mr Szabolcs Horvath, CEO at Crnogorska Komercijalna Banka, said: “CKB is honoured to be the first partner in the Western Balkans signing the guarantee agreement upon its extension as a result of excellent absorption rates and long term successful cooperation with EIF. For the purpose of this programme, we have internally developed EU plus term loan covered by soft collateral matching the demand of SME segment in Montenegro. We believe that this instrument would provide an additional impetus to development of SMEs and Montenegrin economy in general.”

About the EIF

The European Investment Fund (EIF) is part of the European Investment Bank group. Its central mission is to support Europe's micro, small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) by helping them to access finance. EIF designs and develops venture and growth capital, guarantees and microfinance instruments which specifically target this market segment. In this role, EIF fosters EU objectives in support of innovation, research and development, entrepreneurship, growth, and employment.

About WB EDIF

The Western Balkan Enterprise Development and Innovation Facility (WB EDIF) is an EU funded initiative which aims at increasing the financial resources made available to SMEs based in the Western Balkans, as well as support services for private sector development, to support socio-economic development and EU accession across the Regionis. The EUR 145 million of capital pulled together under this Facility by the EU, international financial institutions (IFIs), beneficiaries and bilateral donors will effectively translate into over EUR 300 million of direct financing for SMEs in the region. The Guarantee Facility forms one pillar of WB EDIF and targets SMEs with growth potential and in need of lending to cover financing for both investment and working capital.

The Facility is coordinated by the European Investment Fund and implemented in close cooperation between the governments of the Western Balkans, the European Commission, the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). IFIs, international organisations and bilateral donors active in the region, such as the World Bank, DEG, OECD and others participating in order to streamline the efforts to develop the private sector in the Western Balkans.

About CKB Montenegro

Crnogorska Komercijalna Banka (CKB) is a member of OTP Group which is present in addition to  Montenegro, in eight other countries in South-Eastern Europe, serving altogether near 13 million of clients, in ca. 1 400 branches with 4 000 ATMs. Supporting SMEs with quality banking services and specialized products is one of the key strategic priorities of OTP Group, implemented by CKB in Montenegro.

Press Contacts

EIF: David Yormesor, Tel.: + 352 42 66 88 346, E-Mail: d.yormesor@eif.org

CKB: Maja Vukcevic Tel.: + 382 67 206 026, E-Mail: maja.vukcevic@ckb.me

 
 

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