The European Investment Bank and the I&M bank on Tuesday signed a deal that will see Rwandan small businesses benefit from EUR8 million under the new lending programme for Small and medium sized enterprises (SME’s).
This is the second new small business lending programme between the European Investment Bank and I&M Bank Rwanda in seven years. Previously the EIB floated $3 billion.
The agreement was signed by Sanjeev Anand, Managing Director of I&M Bank Rwanda and Kurt Simonsen, Head of the European Investment Bank’s regional representation for East and Central Africa.
Simonsen said that the I&M bank has proved to be a good and trusted partner over the years and the European Investment Bank (EIB) is confident that the funding will enable Rwandans to attain their economic development strategies.
“We are very proud to work with I&M, who have been using the funding appropriately to facilitate economic development in this country. We are very sure that this money will reach the rightful owners and be used well” he said.
Managing Director, Sanjeev Anand explained that the SME and corporate sector forms the most important part of I&M Bank’s strategy in Rwanda and that the long-term financing lines provided by EIB will go a long way in facilitating efforts to provide investment support to SMEs.
Over the years, the European Investment Bank has extended five small business focused credit lines for a total amount of EUR 31 million to Banque Rwandaise de Développement, Bank of Kigali, and I&M Bank Rwanda Ltd.
The funds have helped to develop more than 100 SMEs and created more than 1, 250 jobs in the private sector in Rwanda. In addition to supporting small and medium sized companies in the country.
The European Investment Bank has signed a credit line with Kenya Commercial Bank to support microfinance and intends to broaden support for private sector investment in Rwanda in the future.