New Operational Program in Bulgaria to Improve SME’s Access to External Financing

New Operational Program in Bulgaria to Improve SME’s Access to External Financing

Bulgarian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) will be able to access 102 million euros from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) under a new operational program, “SME Initiative.”
The project of the operational program, which seeks to boost the competitiveness of SMEs, is available online at the public consultation portal, according to reports of investor.bg.
The resources provided under the operational program are to be distributed by banks.
Talks were held with seven banks in June in connection with the plans of the government to launch the scheme, a sort of a guarantee instrument in support of small and medium-sized businesses.
The authors of the project seek to make sure that 55% of SMEs in Bulgaria have managed to get funding via bank loans by 2023.
The year 2010 is used as a basis for comparison, when 42.5% of the small and medium companies in Bulgaria received loans.
The improved access to funding is expected to boost the productivity of SMEs (value added at factor costs/employee ratio) to 19.3 percentage points, compared to 16.8 percentage points in 2012, the base year.
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