EFSE increases support for small business, housing in Macedonia with Halkbank loan

Frankfurt and Skopje, 22 December 2016 -- The European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE) has lent EUR 15 million to Halkbank AD Skopje to support Macedonia’s private housing sector and micro and small enterprises (MSEs). 
The senior loans – EUR 10 million for housing and EUR 5 million for businesses – increase Halkbank’s ability to finance housing and home improvements for retail borrowers and provide long-term loans to MSEs. Halkbank and the EFSE have been partners since 2006, and the fund has continued to offer financing for on-lending to low-income households and MSEs in Macedonia while supporting Halkbank's strategic orientation towards these market segments.
EFSE Board Chairman Christoph Tiskens said: "These loans are the latest in a long line of investments that underscore the EFSE’s strong partnership with Halkbank AD Skopje. We have been working together for a decade, and the dedication of both partners to private households and small enterprises continues unabated.”
Turhan Ademi, Acting Chief Executive Director of Halkbank AD Skopje, said: "These loans are in line with the mission of Halkbank to provide banking services that will support long-term and sustainable development of the private sector with home improvement projects customized for the Macedonian retail market. Our cooperation with EFSE has had a significant and strong impact, particularly on developing our micro and small-business customers and supporting the retail sector in Macedonia. With these loans, the bank continues its mission to promote the economic development and prosperity of the citizens in the region.”
About the European Fund for Southeast Europe 
The European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE) was initiated by KfW Development Bank (KfW) with the financial support of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the European Commission. It aims to foster economic development and prosperity in Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo, Georgia, Moldova, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Ukraine and Turkey. As access to finance is a key success factor in developing the micro, small and medium enterprise segments, the EFSE focuses on assisting local financial sectors in strengthening their ability to ensure adequate and sustainable financing. The funding the EFSE provides as long-term finance primarily for micro and small enterprises (MSEs) – but also for private households in the form of home improvement loans – is channelled to these loan customers through local partner lending institutions. Supporting the EFSE’s investment activities is the EFSE Development Facility, which provides partner lending institutions with technical assistance, consulting and training services to build operational capacities and professional management. 
Initiated by KfW Development Bank (KfW) on 15 December 2005 from four multi-donor programs under its management, the EFSE is the first public-private partnership of its kind and the first privately managed fund in development finance to leverage private funding for MSE finance in the target region. Capital is provided by donor agencies, international financial institutions and private institutional investors, including the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the European Commission (EC), the Government of Albania, Small and Medium Business Credit Support CJSC (SMBCS), a subsidiary of the Central Bank of Armenia, the Development Bank of Austria (Oesterreichische Entwicklungsbank - OeEB), the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), the Danish International Development Agency (Danida), KfW as Lead Investor, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Netherlands Finance Company (FMO), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the European Investment Bank (EIB), Sal. Oppenheim and Deutsche Bank. 
Oppenheim Asset Management Services S.à r.l., Luxembourg acts as the EFSE’s Fund Manager and Finance in Motion GmbH, Germany as Advisor.
About Halkbank
Halkbank AD Skopje (Halkbank) is raising the bar for speed and quality in financial services within the Macedonian market by implementing innovative processes in its business. With 36 branches in Macedonia, correspondent relationships with over 400 banks and account relationships with 13 foreign banks, Halkbank has a broad national and international network. A large-sized bank by NBRM standards, Halkbank enjoys a sterling reputation as a trustworthy, customer-oriented, innovative and dynamic bank in the Macedonian market. 
Halkbank is also a socially and eco-responsible institution: since its beginnings in Macedonia, the bank has continuously supported environmental development and protection, many socially concerned segments, as well as sports and culture. In the area of long-term development financing in particular, the bank has long-term partnerships with international financial institutions that are benefiting the Macedonian economy as a whole.
In 2015 Halkbank showed continuity in supporting the real economy while the quality of the offered services remained high. The loan portfolio of the Halkbank showed an increase from EUR 275.7 million to EUR 335.5 million, or 21%. The overall net growth of lending to Macedonian companies and citizens was EUR 392 million, where Halkbank had a leading share of 15.2%, or EUR 59.8 million in nominal terms. 
For more information, please visit
Media contact EFSE 
Eric Culp
Press Officer
Tel: +49 (0)69 271 035-307
Media contact Halkbank
PR Department
Tel: +389 (0)2 3250 926

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