UniCredit is ‘part of the solution’ by driving EU funds into CEE
Throughout these uncertain times, UniCredit is providing a point of reference for the CEE, thanks to our strong commitment to supporting clients and the region.
In the first phase of the emergency, we provided liquidity to protect the businesses of our clients and their supply chains, while facilitating direct access to state guarantee schemes.
UniCredit is ‘Part of the Solution’ by driving EU Funds into CEE
As governments introduced different measures to support local economies, we remained in constant dialogue with institutions and our clients, to best support them. This meant providing specialised solutions such as leveraging on the cooperation with International Financial Institutions for risk sharing, structuring project financing with a grant component and setting up facilities for pre-financing agricultural subsidies.
Our dedicated local teams helped SME companies to access EU funds initiatives and financial instruments in each CEE country where we are present.
· By November 2020, UniCredit was offering more than 30 different guarantee solutions in CEE (both local guarantee schemes and EU funded initiatives). In terms of local guarantee schemes initiatives, from April 2020, we signed partnership agreements to support companies through the COVID-19 pandemic in most of our countries
· UniCredit has launched more than 10 initiatives across CEE, leveraging on our strategic partnership with the EIB Group, over the last decade. This includes the JEREMIE, RSI, SME Initiative, COSME, Microfinance Facility, WB EDIF, Fund of Funds under EAFRD, EaSI and InnovFin SMEG Umbrella Facility. The latter, since June 2020, has an extended capacity with a 80% guarantee rate for working capital loans under the EIF COVID support package.
Regarding the InnovFin Umbrella Facility, first established with the EIF in 2016, we doubled our umbrella facility (in December 2019) to reach 1 billion euro of total risk sharing capacity, involving nine CEE countries. In June, we quickly responded to the Covid-19 pandemic to guarantee cash flow continuity for companies by enabling the dedicated support packages, providing working capital loans to SMEs in CEE with a guarantee rate of 80% under simplified eligibility criteria.
Looking forwards, we aim to contribute more in terms of the “green” economic recovery in the EU, through new dedicated financial instruments which will respond to the needs of our clients, leveraging on the Pan-European Guarantee Fund and Invest EU programmes.
UniCredit has provided strong support to finance the recovery from COVID-19
More than ever, governments, supranationals and regions need to raise money to finance their fiscal stimulus and support programmes. This leads to a large issuance increase. UniCredit is proud to be part of the solution at a country-level in Central and Eastern Europe, through nine major transactions with CEE governments, supporting Europe’s economies also in this challenging environment.
On the corporate side, despite the Covid-19 turbulences, CEE Debt Capital Markets successfully closed a large number of transactions (corporate and sovereign), ranking #1 in the CEE EUR Corporate League Table, and #2 in the CEE FI League Table.
These achievements are a confirmation of our commitment to support Europe’s economies. We are able to do this thanks to our strong balance sheet and our capital markets expertise, as well as our excellent client coverage, with our CIB business fully plugged in to our banking operations in CEE.