BUSINESS IN SHORT

Better loans for SMEs

SMALL and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) operating in Slovakia will find it easier and more advantageous to get investment loans and operating capital after UniCredit Bank Slovakia, Tatra Banka, and Slovak Guarantee and Development Bank (SZRB) signed treaties with the European Investment Fund (EIF) representatives on April 3. The EIF was established by EU countries to support SMEs.

SMALL and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) operating in Slovakia will find it easier and more advantageous to get investment loans and operating capital after UniCredit Bank Slovakia, Tatra Banka, and Slovak Guarantee and Development Bank (SZRB) signed treaties with the European Investment Fund (EIF) representatives on April 3. The EIF was established by EU countries to support SMEs.

The contracts are part of the JEREMIE (Joint European Resources for Micro to Medium Enterprises) initiative. Based on them, the banks will be able to provide new loans to businesses in the next two years, with the overall volume of the loans reaching up to €170 million, the SITA newswire reported. All regions except Bratislava will be eligible for the programme.

“Loans from this programme should be cheaper and they will require less securing on the part of the client,” Tatra Banka head Igor Vida said, as quoted by SITA, adding that this will mean the loan burden is lowered for SMEs.

UniCredit Bank expects interest rates for SMEs to drop by 0.3 to 0.5 percentage points, depending on the rating of the client, the bank’s general director Miroslav Štrokendl said, as reported by SITA.
The EIF will provide guarantees of up to 70 percent of the granted loans.

“Thus, we can grant them to a wider circle of clients, also to those who would normally be unable to qualify,” SITA quoted Vida. “These new transactions will help satisfy the big demand for loans from local small and medium-sized enterprises, and allow them to create jobs and support economic growth in the Slovak economy at a critical time.”

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