The proposed project is to provide a syndicated loan in the amount of up to USD 40 million to the Microfinance Bank of Azerbaijan for on-lending to Micro and Small Enterprises (“MSE”). The facility will help MFBA in accessing international capital markets and will assist in deepening the Azeri financial system by providing a long-term financing to support MFBA’s growing MSE lending operations particularly outside of the capital.
The project will have a significant transition impact as it will be the first syndicated loan and will facilitate MFBA’s access to the international commercial debt market and help to diversify the bank’s funding base.
Simultaneously, the growth of the MSE sector in Azerbaijan will help to consolidate the transition, as MFBA provides continuous support to MSEs that would otherwise have little or no access to formal sector finance. Support for micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises is at the heart of the EBRD's mandate for strengthening private sector development.
MFBA, a closed joint stock bank, was opened in Baku on 29 October 2002. MFBA is the only specialist microfinance bank and a leading provider of financial services to MSMEs in Azerbaijan, with a product range comprising MSE business loans and other consumer loans, current accounts, national and international payment services and deposits and other savings products. MFBA ranks 12th by the total assets as of end-2007.
EBRD will retain up to USD 10 million on its own account. An amount of up to USD 30 million under the B-Loan will offered to the syndication market.
USD 40 million.
MFBA operates in accordance with the EBRD's “Environmental Procedures for Local Banks”, which requires borrowers to comply, at a minimum, with national/local environment, health and safety, and labour standards and regulations , and public consultation requirements. MFBA will submit Annual Environmental Reports to the EBRD.
Since the start of its operations in 2002, MFBA has received approximately EUR 3.6 million in technical cooperation funds to support the start-up of the bank and management team as well as the regional expansion for the first 3 years of its operations. The technical cooperation funds were provided by the European Union and Germany via EBRD.
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