The European Investment Fund (EIF) and Poland’s state-owned development bank BGK have agreed to double to 4 billion Polish zloty (1.08 billion U.S. dollars) the financial support to 18,000 Polish small- and medium-sized companies (SMEs) under the Juncker Plan, BGK said Friday in a statement.
Friday’s agreement is part of the European Commission’s Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (COSME) program.
It will allow banks cooperating with BGK to offer loans with reduced collateral requirements due to the EIF’s backing, BGK said in a statement.
Over the past three years, BGK has supported over 7,000 Polish companies through COSME guarantees, the bank said.
BGK’s role is to support Poland’s economic growth through funding offered to investments in infrastructure, local governments and exports. The bank’s role is also to support the expansion of Polish companies abroad.
The Juncker Plan, or the European Commission’s Investment Plan for Europe, is an investment program first announced by European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in November 2014.
The plan aims to remove obstacles to investment, provide visibility and technical assistance to investment projects and make smarter use of financial resources.
The EIF is part of the EIB group. It has been set up to improve European SMEs’ access to funding, under the European Commission’s supervision.