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Public relations section
On 5 March 2004 Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria) EAD and The Council of Europe Development Bank (CEDB) officially signed the Framework Loan Agreement for a loan to benefit small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) throughout Bulgaria. In November 2003, the Council of Europe Development Bank (CEDB), with the support of the Bulgarian Government, approved RBBGs application for loan facility amounting to EUR 20 Mio. The CEBs funds will be applied to the partial financing of productive-investment projects in favour of Bulgarian SMEs, thereby reinforcing their operating position and ability to maintain and create jobs. The CEB will fund up to 50% of each project, while the additional funding will be provided by RBBG. The funds will be available at favourable conditions to SMEs, active in various economic sectors, except for agriculture, employing less than 500 people and with total assets less than EUR 75 Mio.
The loan facility will be utilised in tranches. The first tranche amounting to EUR 10 Mio and maturity 8 years will be disbursed immediately after the signing of the Framework Loan Agreement.
The CEB is particularly pleased to provide this loan initiating CEBs relationship with Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria) EAD. The Council of Europe Development Bank has approved over EUR 65 Mio of projects in Bulgaria since 1998, covering essentially the fields of social housing, flood prevention, and the creation and preservation of jobs in SMEs.
The new loan facility form the CEB, reinforces RBBGs leading position of one of the major lenders to the SME sector in Bulgaria. In 2003, RBBG fully utilised the credit lines granted by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the European Investment Bank (EIB), amounting EUR 20 Mio, to the Bulgarian small and medium-sized companies.