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Public relations section
At a joint press conference with the Bulgarian Ministry of Economy, RBBG presented its activity and plans for financing the SME sector in Bulgaria. This press conference started a series of media events planned by the Ministry and Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria) was the first bank invited due to its active financing of the real sector.
The presentation was met with great interest by the journalists attending the conference and resulted in a number of publications in the press and reports in the local TV stations.
In November 2003, the Council of Europe Development Bank (CEDB) approved RBBG’s application for an EUR 20 Mio. credit line. The funds will be used to support investment projects, which create new jobs and stimulate the development of the SME sector in Bulgaria. CEDB will fund up to 50% of each project, while the additional funding needed will be provided by RBBG. The funds will be available at favourable conditions to SMEs, active in various economic sectors, except agriculture and employing less than 500 people.
The signing of a new EUR 10 Mio. credit line for SME financing from EIB is also expected to take place in the first quarter of 2004.
With the above new lines of credit RBBG reinforces its positions of a leading partner in Bulgaria of the European institutions and one of the leading lenders to the SME sector.
In 2003, within less than a year after signing, RBBG fully disbursed to SMEs credit lines for a total of EUR 20 Mio. from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the European Investment Bank (EIB).
The projects of nine Bulgarian companies, leaders in their respective industries, funded by the Bank in 2003 with the credit line from EIB were also presented at the press conference. The projects are for a total of EUR 22 Mio., 70% export oriented, and will create 250 permanent and 550 seasonal jobs.