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EBRD loan to Mi-Bospo for Bosnian MSMEs and greener buildings

By EBRD  Press Office

  • EBRD to provide a €2.5 million package to Mikrokreditna Fondacija Mi-Bospo Tuzla
  • €1.5 million for on-lending to MSMEs in Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • €1 million for residential energy efficiency, backed by grants from the EU, WBIF, Austria

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is extending a €2.5 million package to a micro-credit institution in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Mikrokreditna Fondacija Mi-Bospo Tuzla (Mi-Bospo).

€1.5 million of the package will be used to provide subloans to local micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), especially businesses run by women and active in the agribusiness sector. Access to finance remains an obstacle for many small firms in Bosnia and Herzegovina despite the fact that these form the backbone of the country’s economy.

The remaining €1 million will be used to support investments in energy efficiency, under the Western Balkans Green Economy Financing Facility (GEFF). Mi-Bospo will lend the funds to borrowers in the residential sector – individuals, housing collectives, producers, vendors and service providers – to invest in high-performance green technologies, materials and solutions in privately owned residential dwellings and buildings.

The “green” portion of the financing is provided under the umbrella of the €135 million GEFF programme for the Western Balkans, which is supported by the European Union (EU), the multi-donor Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF) and the Austrian Federal Ministry of Finance, and is part of the Regional Energy Efficiency Programme (REEP) for the Western Balkans.

Mi-Bospo, based in Tuzla in north-eastern Bosnia and Herzegovina, is the fourth-largest microfinance institution in the country and was established as a World Bank pilot project in 1996. The EBRD provided a first loan to Mi-Bospo in 2007, launching a successful cooperation that continues to this day.

Aleksandra Vukosavljević, EBRD Director, Financial Institutions, said: “We are pleased to extend the cooperation with Mi-Bospo in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Improving access to finance will help boost the competitiveness of local MSMEs and create more jobs and business opportunities in the country. We are also delighted to welcome Mi-Bospo to our GEFF programme, which will accelerate green lending in Bosnia and Herzegovina and contribute to energy savings and carbon emission reductions.”

Safet Husić, CEO of Mi-Bospo, said: “Mi-Bospo’s goal is to provide our clients with suitable loans. Therefore, we monitor the market and its needs to give the best service to our clients. The EBRD is a very important strategic partner with whom we have a successful long-term collaboration. We appreciate the approved credit funds for our entrepreneurial clients, primarily women, and for energy efficiency measures. The technical support in creating energy efficiency products through the GEFF programme will mean a lot to us. This programme and the funds will benefit Mi-Bospo and our clients, and will help us to fulfil our mission.”

The EBRD has invested nearly €2.9 billion in 203 projects in Bosnia and Herzegovina since it began operating there in 1996. The Bank’s strategic priorities in the country are to promote the green economy, support the competitive development of the private sector and foster regional integration.

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