EBRD extends extra €15 million to Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria) for energy efficiency projects

By Axel  Reiserer

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The EBRD is providing Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria) EAD with a new loan of €15 million to strengthen the bank’s efforts in the field of energy efficiency. The loan comes under the Bulgarian Energy Efficiency for Competitive Industry Finance Facility (BEECIFF), which benefits from donor support provided under EU Structural Funds.

The funding will support Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria) in growing its portfolio of sustainable energy financing and meet the growing demand by Bulgarian small and medium-sized enterprises for energy efficiency finance. The EBRD loan will increase the financing available for rational energy utilisation and assist in mitigating increasing energy prices and high energy intensity in Bulgaria.

Daniel Berg, EBRD Director, Bulgaria, said: “We are proud to deepen our cooperation with Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria) with this additional loan. Our successful partnership is built not only on commercial fundamentals but also our shared vision of strengthening local small businesses and improving energy efficiency. There continues to be strong demand for these innovative products which combine grants and loans to facilitate energy efficiency investments. However, we continue our dialogue with the Government to ensure incentives for investing in energy efficiency are strong.”

Since 2002, Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria) has participated in six EBRD credit lines for the Bulgarian business and retail sectors, including SMEs, sustainable energy financing under BEERECL, BEECIFF and the REECL frameworks. The new loan will now allow for the continuation of the strong cooperation between Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria) and the EBRD in lending to companies for energy efficiency purposes and provide further support to local businesses.

To date, the EBRD has financed over 200 projects in Bulgaria with a total volume of more than €8.5 billion. The Bank is focused on strengthening sustainable growth in the country with a focus on enhancing the competitiveness of local businesses and investing in the modernisation of the country’s real economy and infrastructure.

Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria) EAD (http://www.rbb.bg) was established in 1994. The bank is fully owned by Raiffeisen Bank International AG (RBI). RBI regards both Austria, where it is a leading commercial and investment bank, and Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) as its home market. In CEE, RBI operates an extensive network of subsidiary banks, leasing companies and a range of other specialized financial service providers in 17 markets. RBI is the only Austrian bank with a presence in both the world's financial centres and in Asia, the group's further additional area of focus.In total around 59,000 RBI employees serve over 14.3 million customers through more than 3,000 business outlets, the great majority of which are located in CEE. RBI is a fully-consolidated subsidiary of Raiffeisen Zentralbank Oesterreich AG (RZB). RZB indirectly owns around 78.5 per cent of the common stock, the remainder is in free float. RBI's shares are listed on the Vienna Stock Exchange.

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