EIB supports SME projects in Navarra
The European Investment Bank (EIB) has granted a EUR 100 million loan to Sociedad de Desarrollo de Navarra, S.A. (SODENA), a company majority-owned by the Government of Navarra, for financing the investment projects of small and medium-sized businesses under the “Moderna Plan” – a regional programme designed to update Navarra’s growth model. The EIB loan will mainly serve to finance projects in the industry and services sectors and RDI. This is the first instalment of a total loan of EUR 250 million.
EIB Vice-President Magdalena Álvarez Arza, the President of the Government of Navarra, Yolanda Barcina, and SODENA’s CEO Lourdes Goicoechea signed the loan agreement this morning.
The EIB funds will support the strategic sectors identified in the Moderna Plan by cofinancing investment projects promoted by SMEs (at least 70%) and public entities (up to 30%). Under the agreement, SODENA will pass on the funds to national and regional intermediary banks, which will then onlend them to the final beneficiaries. To be eligible, projects will have to bear the “Moderna” stamp granted by the Moderna Foundation.
At the signing ceremony, the EIB Vice-President stressed “the EIB’s firm commitment to supporting projects that foster the knowledge economy – the key to improving the economy’s competitiveness and promoting quality growth”. She went to underline “the importance of this operation as a tool for stimulating job creation by small and medium-sized businesses, the backbone of our productive fabric”.
The President of the Government of Navarra, Yolanda Barcina Angulo, said that the loan would give a major boost to new business projects in Navarra and that the overall EIB finance would generate estimated investment in excess of EUR 500 million.
This loan comes under the EIB’s policy of assisting small businesses in the current economic climate by facilitating their access to capital or investment finance with long maturities, flexible disbursement schedules and low interest rates. In return the EIB requires greater transparency from the intermediary banks, which must clearly inform their customers of the improvements to the terms of their loans made possible by the EIB funding.