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Davr Bank joins EBRD’s Women in Business programme

By Anton Usov

  • EBRD providing financial package of up to US$ 5 million to Davr Bank
  • Support for women-led small enterprises, lending to microbusinesses and SMEs
  • Roll-out of Women in Business programme in Uzbekistan

Women entrepreneurs in Uzbekistan will benefit from Davr Bank becoming one of the first banks in the country and in Central Asia to join the Women in Business (WiB) initiative of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

The programme promotes women’s entrepreneurship and participation in business by assisting with access to finance, know-how and technical advice. The Women in Business in Uzbekistan is supported by donor funding from the Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi) and the EBRD’s Small Business Impact FundItaly, Japan, Korea, Luxembourg, NorwaySweden, SwitzerlandTaipei China and the USA).

The EBRD is providing a financing package of up to US$ 5 million to Davr Bank, a privately owned financial institution established in Uzbekistan in 2001. The funds of up to US$ 2 million will be used to support women-led businesses and up to US$ 3 million be channelled to facilitate lending to micro, small and medium-sized companies. The funds will be disbursed either in US dollars or in Uzbek som, with the latter option designed to protect small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) from foreign currency exchange-related risks.

The initiative will also provide technical support to financial institutions like Davr Bank to enhance the services they offer to women-led businesses.

Uzbekistan’s SMEs, many of which are owned or managed by women, represent a significant share of private sector companies in the country and currently generate around 50 per cent of GDP.

The Women in Business programme also includes advisory service projects alongside training, mentoring and longer-term coaching to provide women entrepreneurs with the know-how, skills and confidence to take the next step in growing their businesses.

To date, the EBRD has invested €1.8 billion through 79 projects in Uzbekistan’s economy.

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