The operation will finance small and medium-scale projects located in Albania in the fields of industry, infrastructure improvements, environmental protection, health and education, energy efficiency as well as services including tourism. According to the agreement, a minimum of 70% of the loan will be allocated to the SME sector.
The EIB funding will cover up to 100% of the investment cost of projects implemented by SMEs.
The operation will have a financial leverage effect since the EIB requires that the intermediary, Tirana Bank, grows its total SME portfolio by double the amount of the EIB loan. In this way, some €20m should be invested in Albania to boost the economy and help the country’s progress towards economic recovery.
Tirana Bank will also transfer the advantage of EIB funding to SMEs and local authority investors through lower interest rates and longer maturities.