Beirut, Lebanon, September 16, 2019 – Credit Libanais, one of Lebanon’s leading financial institutions, announced the completion of a USD 100 million finance package from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), to expand finance and trade facilities to Small and Medium Enterprises (SME’s) in Lebanon. The EBRD financing comprises a senior loan for the value of USD 50 million to enhance its lending to SMEs in Lebanon, in addition to a trade financing limit of USD 50 million, under the Trade Facilitation Programme (TFP) to finance cross-border trade facilities.
SMEs constitute around 95 percent of the total companies in Lebanon and provide almost half of the market employment opportunities, despite facing significant financing constraints. EBRD’s financing package is expected to expand SME lending by 10 percent and the number of SMEs in Lebanon by 25 percent.
The EBRD TFP was launched in 1999, with the aim of promoting international trade between its countries of operations, in the form of guarantees and short-term loans to selected participating banks and factoring companies. EBRD’s trade financing facility will support regional and international integration through trade and increased access to finance for importing and exporting firms in Lebanon, especially small and medium-sized enterprises.
Dr. Joseph Torbey, Group Credit Libanais Chairman-General Manager, declared: “EBRD’s investment will assist Credit Libanais in providing further support to SMEs, in light of the challenging domestic and regional situation. This funding will also contribute to boosting international trade thereby strengthening the economy. This is the first time that Credit Libanais and EBRD have joined forces and we look forward to having a long-standing partnership between the two Banks. This deal is among several other transactions that Credit Libanais has completed, as part of its strategy to support the private sector and the SMEs in particular and in achieving its objectives related to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).”
In turn, Ms. Gretchen Biery, Associate Director & Head of Lebanon at EBRD, said “We are delighted to partner with Credit Libanais to further support small businesses in Lebanon which we consider the back bone of the economy and to boost intra-regional trade”.
The EBRD is a multilateral bank that promotes the development of the private sector and economy of more than 38 countries across three continents. The Bank is owned by 69 countries, as well as the European Union and the European Investment Bank. The EBRD started investing in Lebanon in 2017 and today has committed almost €500 million in the country. The Bank’s focus is on supporting private sector competitiveness, promoting sustainable energy supply and enhancing the quality and efficiency of public service delivery. For more information, visit www.ebrd.com
About Credit Libanais
Credit Libanais, established in 1961, is one of the major Alpha Banks Group banks in Lebanon. The Bank has a network outreach of 79 branches including local and international presence in Cyprus, Bahrain and Iraq, a representative office in Canada and a subsidiary bank in Senegal. CL enjoys a relationship with globally strategic major international correspondent banks. Leveraging on its extensive branch network, the Bank’s major activities include retail banking services, including cards, corporate banking services, trade finance services, capital markets services and private banking and asset management services. CL holds a dominant position in the e-banking and e-commerce through several of its affiliates and provides technology solutions, logistics and marketing for ATM and POS networks and payment gateway solutions for e-commerce. For more information, visit www.creditlibanais.com.lb