EBRD lends € 20 million to UniCredit Leasing Serbia to support SMEs
BELGRADE (Serbia), April 16 (SeeNews) – The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has announced that it is providing a loan of 20 million euros ($ 23.9 million) to UniCredit Leasing Serbia for support local small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by improving their competitiveness.
The loan will give Serbian SMEs access to finance, allowing them to go beyond their day-to-day operations and invest in upgrades to meet EU standards, the EBRD said in a statement. release Thursday.
SMEs can use the funds to upgrade technology, processes or services, especially those related to product quality, health and safety and EU environmental requirements, the EBRD said.
“Access to well-structured financial and advisory support can encourage local businesses to invest in strengthening their competitiveness, and we’ve seen how this can help local businesses become champions. That’s why we stand united with it. our partners, the European Union and the Serbian Ministry of Economy, in our aim to continue improving access to finance for SMEs in Serbia ”, said Zsuzsanna Hargitai, EBRD Regional Director, Western Balkans and head of Serbia, in the statement.
SMEs can also obtain technical assistance, including advisory support from the EBRD, and once they have successfully completed their investment, they will be eligible for a cash grant of 15% of the total loan amount, both funded by the European Union (EU). .
“We are very pleased that half of the total loan amount supports investments in green technologies and energy efficiency, which is in line with UniCredit’s strategic commitment to creating sustainable value,” noted Ana Milic, CEO of UniCredit Leasing Serbia.
Investments will be channeled through the Western Balkans SME Competitiveness Support Program, to which the EBRD provides loans and the EU contributes incentive payments and technical assistance. The aim is to help SMEs modernize their activities and take advantage of business opportunities in the Western Balkans region and in the wider European market.
($ = 0.83549 euro)