EBRD and EU support small businesses in Ukraine via Crédit Agricole

22 Apr 2021

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is providing a loan of €25 million to Crédit Agricole Bank Ukraine to increase the competitiveness of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) in the country. The loan is backed by grant funding from the European Union under its EU4Business initiative.

The new financing will enable the bank to expand its leasing solutions, in Ukrainian hryvnia, to MSMEs, so that these firms can invest in upgrades of machinery, equipment and technologies that comply with EU product quality, health and safety, and environmental protection standards. The lender aims to dedicate at least 70 per cent of the loan to financing green technologies, in line with the EBRD’s Green Economy Transition (GET) approach.

In addition to long-term financing, lessees will receive grant support, funded by the EU, in the form of investment incentives on completion of their upgrade projects.

The funding is available under the EU4Business-EBRD Credit Line (https://eu4business.eu/projects/) ‒ a joint initiative by the EBRD and EU to help companies bring their products and services in line with EU standards, foster workplace health and safety, and advance green practices.

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The programme is also available in Georgia and Moldova, and recently extended to other Eastern Partnership countries to make economies greener, more competitive and more sustainable.

Alexander Pavlov, Deputy Director for Ukraine, Financial Institutions, said: “Access to finance and technology is crucial for sustainable growth of Ukrainian private sector and MSMEs in particular. Leasing is an important alternative way of financing SMEs and we are pleased to increase our support to development of leasing solutions through strong and reliable financial sector partners such as Crédit Agricole.”

Crédit Agricole has been operating in Ukraine (https://www.ebrd.com/ukraine.html) since 1993 and provides a full range of banking services there. In particular, it is a leader in car leasing and a strategic partner to agribusinesses.

Carlos de Cordoue, the CEO of Crédit Agricole, said: “Crédit Agricole is a reliable, long-term partner of the EBRD and I embrace this new stage of our cooperation. By joining efforts, we are supporting businesses to upgrade their machinery fleets, improve competitiveness in the domestic market and grow exports. For that, Crédit Agricole has an effective tool: financial leasing which is becoming more and more popular among our clients. And now, thanks to this programme, leasing of the machinery is even more affordable and financially favourable.”

Ukraine is a top three investment destination for the EBRD. In the past two years alone, the Bank has committed €2 billion to the economy. Financing smaller businesses directly and through financial institutions is a particular focus of the EBRD’s work in Ukraine.

The EBRD also finances infrastructure, energy efficiency and energy security, agricultural and industrial projects. The investments are combined with support for policies that promote the fight against corruption, good governance of state and a more transparent business environment.

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