Georgia: EIB Approves EUR 15 Mln Loan to JSC Liberty Bank
Georgia, December, 23 2019 -
The European Investment Bank (EIB) and JSC Liberty Bank, signed a Loan Agreement within the framework of the EU4Business Initiative. Funds under this facility will be used to finance Small and Medium Enterprises operating in Georgia.
Following the change of ownership in Liberty Bank in 2017, the new management have embarked on an aggressive business transformation strategy. Key pillars of Liberty Bank’s new targets include:
- Investing in the training of people to provide the best possible client services;
- Promoting a customer focused business model to improve retail, MSME and Corporate customer needs;
- Building strong international partnerships to promote best business practices in Georgia.
The new management believes that Liberty Bank is well positioned to promote financial inclusion across the country, given its unparalleled coverage of Georgia that extends to even the most remote locations of the country. EIB Loan should enable Liberty to continue lending to Georgian SME’s on significantly better terms by, among other things, transferring the financial advantage afforded to Liberty within the framework of EIB facility. Liberty will also receive technical assistance to improve its SME lending practices and product offers under the Eastern Partnership Technical Assistance Trust Fund.
Levan Tkhelidze, Deputy General Director of Liberty Bank said: “We are delighted to have an opportunity of working with European Investment Bank. This is yet another major milestone in the development of Liberty Bank and a very strong incentive for the management team to deliver on our stated business objectives. Liberty Bank is uniquely qualified to promote SME lending and EIB loan will deepen our ties with entrepreneurs throughout the country.”
Irakli Rukhadze, Chairman of the Board of Liberty Bank said: “I would like to thank EIB for the confidence it has shown in Liberty Bank. I am confident that this partnership will help the Bank in achieving one its key stated business objective, which is to solidify its position in this very dynamic and important segment of the Georgian Economy”.
Lilyana Pavlova, EIB Vice-President commented: “Support to economic development and smart, sustainable and inclusive growth are a key priority of the EU’s work with Georgia, As the EU bank, we are committed to supporting small and medium-sized businesses – but we need the help of local partners to do so. I am therefore happy that we are extending our cooperation with a strong existing partner of the EIB and that we reach out to new institutions as well. SMEs play a significant role in Georgia’s economy and our transactions will pave the way for better business prospects of those companies and the country in general.”