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EBRD participates in syndicated loan for Ukraine’s Kernel Group

By Anton Usov

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The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is stepping up support for the Ukrainian economy by taking part in a US$ 230 million syndicated loan facility for Kernel Group of Ukraine , one of the largest vertically- integrated agricultural holdings in the country.

By committing US$ 50 million to the facility, the EBRD is sending an important signal of confidence to other investors and market players at a time of limited external funding in Ukraine.

The Warsaw Stock Exchange-listed Kernel is involved in grain handling, oilseed crushing and trans-shipment activity across Ukraine and Russia, and in farming operations in Ukraine.

The syndicated loan facility, arranged by Natixis, the international corporate, investment management and financial services arm of Groupe BPCE, the second-largest banking player in France, will support Kernel’s working capital needs associated with the procurement of grain in Ukraine and its subsequent storage, transportation and trans-shipment.

Through this project, the EBRD is continuing to support Ukraine’s agricultural sector, which accounts for over 15 per cent of GDP and is the main driver of the domestic economy.

The EBRD is the largest financial investor in Ukraine. As of the end of September 2014 the Bank had committed almost €9.8 billion (US$ 12.4 billion) through 337 projects in the country.

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