First GGF Loan Agreement with PBZ paves way for renewable energy and energy efficiency investments in Croatia
- GGF credit facility for Privredna banka Zagreb (PBZ) totals EUR 25 million
- Loan improves Croatia's energy security and diversifies its energy supply
- Estimated annual reduction of CO2 emissions by 44,000 tons per year
The Green for Growth Fund, Southeast Europe (GGF, the Fund) and Privredna banka Zagreb dd have signed a EUR 25.0 million loan agreement (PBZ, the Bank) in Croatia. The GGF's credit facility is structured to finance renewable energy (RE) and energy efficiency (EE) projects in Croatia, helping to improve the country's energy security and diversify its energy supply. The investment will also translate into substantial reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. PBZ is the GGF's first partner institution in Croatia.
A member of Intesa Sanpaolo Group, PBZ is Croatia's second largest bank and already has significant experience in financing EE and RE projects. PBZ offers a comprehensive range of banking services to corporate and retail customers through its extensive branch network.
The GGF loan will support PBZ's growth strategy in the energy sector, providing the long-term financing necessary for the type of projects the Bank is planning to support. Potential RE projects include investments such as small wind farms, biomass or hydropower plants, while other projects, including in the area of EE, are targeted at both private households and businesses, for investments ranging from replacement of old windows and doors to an energy efficient overhaul of a manufacturing company. The portfolio of RE projects financed by the GGF loan is projected to generate CO2 emission savings of approximately 44,000 tons per year.
"Privredna banka Zagreb's track record and strong commitment to growing Croatia's renewable energy base were deciding factors for this major first step in our partnership with PBZ. Croatia offers high-quality renewable resources, and there is a clear opportunity for developing clean, sustainable, and economically viable projects. The GGF loan to PBZ will have a very high demonstration impact on financing for green energy investments and will pave the way for the further development of this sector," said Christopher Knowles, Chairman of the GGF.
"Within its social responsibility strategic orientation PBZ is strongly supporting programs and projects structured for the promotion of sustainable development. We are continuously improving our range of products with the new programs developed to provide funding for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. Therefore, we are very pleased that PBZ is the GGF's first partner institution in Croatia with this new facility, which will make available additional funds for sustainable development and environmental protection projects," said Mr. Bozo Prka CEO of Privredna Banka Zagreb.
ABOUT THE GREEN FOR GROWTH FUND, SOUTHEAST EUROPE (GGF)
Initiated in December 2009 by the KfW Entwicklungsbank (the German Development Bank) and the European Investment Bank (EIB) with the financial support of the European Commission and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Green for Growth Fund, Southeast Europe (GGF) is dedicated to enhancing energy efficiency and fostering the use of renewable energy sources in Southeast Europe, including Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, FYR Macedonia, Kosovo*, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey as well as in the nearby European Neighborhood region comprised of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. The GGF provides refinancing to financial institutions for on-lending to enterprises and private households for energy efficiency projects. The GGF also invests directly in specialist energy service companies (ESCOs) as well as energy service and supply companies, and renewable energy projects. The activities of the GGF are supported by a Technical Assistance Facility. The GGF is a public-private partnership with an investor base of donor agencies, international financial institutions and institutional private investors. The GGF is registered under Luxembourg law as a SICAV (variable capital investment company). The GGF is privately managed by Oppenheim Asset Management Services S.à r.l., Luxembourg, in concert with the fund advisor, Finance in Motion GmbH, Frankfurt/Main, Germany, and a technical advisor, MACS Management & Consulting Services GmbH, Frankfurt/Main, Germany.
* (This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSC 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of independence)
ABOUT PRIVREDNA BANKA ZAGREB d.d., CROATIA
Privredna Banka Zagreb (PBZ) was founded in 1966. With an established business base and a highly recognized national brand name PBZ is the second largest banking group in Croatia, serving about 1.6 million clients through the most extensive branch network in the country with over 200 branches. On top of core banking services the PBZ Group offers a diverse range of specialized services including leasing, real estate business, fund management and credit card services. PBZ is a member of one of the biggest European banking groups - Intesa Sanpaolo which owns 76.6% of its share capital.
For additional information about the PBZ, please visit http://www.pbz.hr
Green for Growth Fund, Southeast Europe
Croatian media: Samir Djikić
T: +49 (0)179 117 16 25
International media: Christine Prütz
T: +49 (0)69 9778 7650-22
Privredna banka Zagreb d.d.Dražen Dumančić
T: +385 (0) 1 6360 259