The concept review has passed, now pending a final review of the European Bank.

The financing project determines the allocation of a loan in one tranche to BCR who will provide medium to long term financing to private companies for production, investment, trade, services and working capital needs, according to the financial institution.

EBRD stressed that SME lending is currently narrow and the availability of financing for short, medium and long term will add to the successful implementation of the other credit lines prior granted to BCR by EBRD.

“Supporting the growth of BCR will also strengthen the banking sector under the current global crisis”, said EBRD.

BCR’s SME and microenterprise loan portfolio amounted 2.6 bln euro at the end of last year, according to unaudited data, the market share of the lender exceeding 20%, EBRD says.

BCR, Romania’s biggest bank in terms of assets, is the subsidiary of Austrian-based Erste Bank and has manages 4,5 million client database, represented both by natural and legal persons.

BCR will further have to meet the environment procedures of EBRD, that stipulate among other the relay of environment and social reports relay to the creditor.

Many specialists outlined that fund absorption from institutional lenders such as EBRD was a cheap solution, in the context of shrinking financing availability.

In December, EBRD granted a 100-mln euro senior loan for five years to Banca Transilvania – where EBRD holds stake – for the same purpose, namely SME lending.