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CEB approves €200 million for the Croatian Bank for Reconstruction and Development

23 March 2021

PARIS –The Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) approved a €200 million loan to the Croatian Bank for Reconstruction and Development (HBOR) to develop and upgrade local and regional social infrastructure, enable access to finance for MSMEs, and support earthquake recovery and reconstruction efforts.

Croatia’s economy contracted sharply in 2020, impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and by the March and December 2020 earthquakes that caused significant damage to public and private property and infrastructure.

The CEB loan is intended to help municipalities, cities, and counties to respond to the current socio-economic challenges by financing sustainable investments in municipal infrastructure, particularly those to be co-financed by the European Union (EU). In addition, the CEB financing will help to reconstruct and retrofit the infrastructure and buildings damaged by the 2020 earthquakes.

The loan will also help to preserve and maintain employment with the MSMEs by ensuring financing resources for investments and working capital, including for youth, women, and start-up businesses.

The Governor of the CEB, Rolf Wenzel, said: “Assisting local communities with their social and emergency investments and ensuring financing for MSMEs are two priority areas for the CEB. Enabling EU-funded investments in our member states represents another priority area. We are pleased to be able to continue working with the HBOR and, thus, to ensure a part of the financial resources needed for such priorities, in a joint effort to contribute to Croatia’s inclusive and sustainable recovery.”

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Croatia joined the CEB in June 1997.  To date, the Bank has approved more than €1 billion in financing to support key investments in health, urban and rural infrastructure, flood prevention measures, and micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs). In addition, Croatia benefits from and is a partner to the CEB-managed Regional Housing Programme. More details are available here.

Set up in 1956, the CEB (Council of Europe Development Bank) has 42 member states. Twenty-two Central, Eastern and South Eastern European countries, forming the Bank's target countries, are listed among the member states. As a major instrument of the policy of solidarity in Europe, the Bank finances social projects by making available resources raised in conditions reflecting the quality of its rating (Aa1 with Moody's, outlook stable, AAA with Standard & Poor's, outlook stable, AA+ with Fitch Ratings, outlook stable and AAA* with Scope Ratings, outlook stable). It thus grants loans to its member states, and to financial institutions and local authorities in its member states for the financing of projects in the social sector, in accordance with its Articles of Agreement.
*unsolicited