The European Investment Bank (EIB) will lend Garanti Bank Romania €5 million for investment in women entrepreneurs in Romania.
The funding – the first EIB loan tranche intended specifically for female business leaders in the EU – will be matched by Garanti Bank up to another €5 million. Loans will be made available to small and medium-sized enterprises and mid-caps with more than 50 per cent female ownership, providing favourable financing to women entrepreneurs in Romania as the country opens its year-long presidency of the European Council.
In total, the loan fund is expected to benefit up to 260 women-led businesses and support the provision of around 6,100 jobs. The EIB has declared its aim to promote gender equality and diversity as part of a wider endeavour to ensure the projects it supports benefit all members of the international community. By investing in women entrepreneurs in Romania, the EIB aims to acknowledge and support the role of women as economic actors in line with the bank’s own Strategy on Gender Equality and Women’s Economic Empowerment.
EIB Vice-President Andrew McDowell said: “This innovative project backed by the Investment Plan for Europe enables the EIB for the first time in the EU to provide a loan dedicated to supporting investments by female entrepreneurs. Women entrepreneurs are a powerful source of economic development and they can contribute even more to sustainable growth if they have better access to finance.”
Corina Crețu, European Commissioner for Regional Policy, said: “I am very glad that the Juncker Plan is lending a helping hand to women entrepreneurs in Romania, assisting them express their talents and turn their ideas into concrete projects. Empowering women and giving them the financial means to succeed will directly benefit Romania’s economy. I welcome this new agreement and I hope to see many more like this in the future.”