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SOFIA (Bulgaria), October 25 (SeeNews) - The European Investment Fund (EIF), part of the EIB Group, and JOBS MFI, the microfinance unit of Bulgarian Development Bank (BDB) signed an agreement to support 320 micro-enterprises with 10 million levs ($5.7 million/5.1 million euro), EIF said.
The agreement was concluded under the European Commission's Programme for Employment and Social Innovation (EaSI), EIF said in a statement on Thursday.
"This operation will support a small non-banking financial institution, dedicated to financing of the small-scale entrepreneurial sector in Bulgaria, by enhancing the access to financial services, with a potential multiplier effect on job creation and local economic development," the statement read.
The transaction is also backed by a guarantee from the EU budget, under Juncker's Plan and the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), which allows the EIB Group to invest in more and often higher-risk operations, EIF said.
"This operation between EIF and JOBS MFI, implemented for the first time in Bulgaria, will improve access to finance for micro-enterprises operating particularly in rural areas characterised by a slower economic development. With its potential multiplier effect on job creation and local economic development it contributes to the improvement of the standard of living of the entrepreneurs’ families and to the development of the respective local communities in less advanced regions,” Alessandro Tappi, EIF Chief Investment Officer, said in the statement.
(1 euro=1.95583 levs)