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€35 million loan to BMCE Bank of Africa for energy efficiency in Morocco

By Nibal Zgheib

traduction française

Financing energy efficiency and small-scale renewable energy investments

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Agence Française de Développement (AFD) and the European Investment Bank (EIB) are teaming up to strengthen sustainable energy measures in Morocco, with the support of the European Union Neighbourhood Investment Facility (EU NIF).

The three financial institutions are providing a €35 million financing facility to BMCE Bank of Africa and its leasing subsidiary Maghrebail.

The finance line is the third under the Morocco Sustainable Energy Financing Facility (MorSEFF), a comprehensive programme for sustainable energy investments through financial institutions.

The proceeds of this EBRD-led facility are dedicated to financing energy efficiency and small-scale renewable energy investments. BMCE Bank of Africa will on-lend to small and medium-sized enterprises and corporates in the commercial and industrial sectors, including commercial construction and energy service companies.

BMCE Bank of Africa will also raise awareness among its clients, promoting energy-efficient and renewable energy technologies and strengthening local production.

In addition, comprehensive technical assistance and investment incentives, funded by the EU NIF and by the EBRD Southern and Eastern Mediterranean (SEMED) Multi-Donor Fund*, will provide support to BMCE Bank of Africa in the design of business development tools and the successful implementation of the facility. It will also allow clients of BMCE Bank of Africa to receive support for project implementation, as well as investment incentives, encouraging them to make sustainable energy investments.

Mike Taylor, EBRD Director for Financial Institutions, SEMED and the Caucasus, said: “We are very happy to be continuing our work with BMCE Bank of Africa towards the more efficient and sustainable use of energy in Morocco. This is a very important initiative that promotes best practice and raises awareness about the advantages of sustainable energy investment. MorSEFF benefits from the expertise the EBRD has accumulated in similar schemes through which we have invested €19 billion in sustainable energy, of which €4 billion has been made available through SEFF’s to more than 100 financial intermediaries in 24 countries.”

Othman Benjelloun, Chairman of BMCE Bank of Africa Group, commented: “In addition to the great commercial success of the first sustainable energy facility of €20 million for BMCE Bank of Africa, MorSEFF has increased knowledge of the renewable energy market, customer awareness and the skills of staff who are dedicated to the promotion of sustainable development, energy efficiency and renewable on a small scale. In the context of COP22, it is with enthusiasm that we are renewing our partnership with the EBRD, AFD and EIB for a new MorSEFF program to support companies in their environmental approach and position ourselves as the reference bank in these fields.”

Marie-Hélène Loison, AFD Director of the Mediterranean and Middle East Department, said: “AFD is proud to be part of the MorSEFF initiative, which fits perfectly into Moroccan public policies and in development priorities. Since 2005, AFD has committed more than €21 billion to projects with positive global impacts on climate, including €2.5 billion with about 70 partner banks, especially in the Mediterranean region. We are thus very pleased to take part in this renewed cooperation with the Moroccan banking system to promote energy efficiency and renewable energy, in particular with BMCE Bank of Africa, who contributed to the first credit line with great success.”

Heinz Olbers, EIB Director of Lending Operations in Neighbouring Countries, observed:

“We have made climate action one of our top priorities, and with our lending and advisory activities we mobilise financial resources in Morocco, as elsewhere, and channel them where impacts are expected to be the highest. Today, we continue our commitment to Morocco to reinforce the role of the private sector in climate investments in order to cut emissions and build a climate-resilient society.”

*Donors to the SEMED Multi-Donor Fund include: Australia, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Taipei China and the United Kingdom.

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