The European Investment Bank (EIB), the bank of the European Union, will provide €30 million to the Slovenian Regional Development Fund (SRDF) and contribute to the creation of a new credit line designed to accelerate the COVID-19 recovery of Slovenian small and medium companies (SMEs), mid-caps and municipalities.
The SRDF credit line will be available to companies operating in the agriculture, manufacturing and services sectors of the local economy, among the hardest hit by the pandemic.
Lilyana Pavlova, Vice President of the EIB, who is responsible for operations in Slovenia, said:“With this operation the EIB continues to deliver hands-on support to Slovenia, its companies and local authorities. Мore accessible and more flexible financing is crucial for faster COVID-19 recovery. We want to see Slovenia weather the crisis as quickly as possible, so the country can continue to grow and develop, create and protect jobs and incomes for its citizens, and be able to contribute to global climate action. I would like to thank the SRDF for being a constructive partner of ours in Slovenia.”
Municipalities will be able to use the EIB funds at SRDF to improve infrastructure, environmental protection and energy efficiency and boost the knowledge economy in Slovenia, as well as for financing projects offering a local-level response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Matjaž Ribaš, MBA, Chief Executive Officer of the SRDF, said: “The mission of the SRDF, as a state-owned financial found, is to provide programs and financial products for regional development of Slovenia, wherein we have the support from the EIB bank, with which we cooperated for many years. Since the beginning of COVID-19 pandemic, SRDF was active in providing special financial programs for recovery of Slovene companies. With the new loan from EIB, we will be able to further enhance our financial programs for post- COVID-19 recovery projects of Slovene companies and for local infrastructure, needed to support new efforts of economy and society.”
Ribaš added: “With which we will not only protect jobs and income, but in some cases, also support the creation of new businesses, growth of income and creation of new jobs. We are very pleased that we cooperate with EIB in this manner. We are sure, that the current cooperation with EIB brings many potentials for further projects and additional collaborations.”
Flexible and more accessible finances for faster recovery of Slovenian economy
The credit line will support Slovenian companies by providing flexible financing for working capital, additional liquidity needs or ongoing and new investments and expansion plans. The funding will allow the companies to protect jobs and continue to fuel Slovenian economic and social growth.
Access to long-term financing, addressed by this loan, is key for the stable investment activities of Slovenian SMEs and mid-caps. As the backbone of the local economy, these companies generate 64.5% of total value added and 72% of employment in the non-financial sector, according to the European Commission