The Black Sea Trade and Development Bank (BSTDB) is extending a local currency facility to Georgia to provide support for small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

BSTDB has issued Georgian lari (GeL)-denominated bonds, and will loan the proceeds to the Bank of Georgia who will use the money to finance investments and working capital needs of local businesses.

“The amount of the loan is GeL60mn.The bond was issued last Thursday and the proceeds of the loan were received by the Bank of Georgia on Friday,” a spokesperson for BSTDB tells GTR.

The facility, which has a maturity period of five years, will support the development of Georgian SMEs without creating foreign exchange risk.

“We have an ongoing interest in providing finance in local currency, following the first GeL funding provided in 2015, and we are pleased to sign this loan which, in combination with the bond issue, will contribute to capital market development in Georgia,” says BSTDB president Ihsan Ugur Delikanli.

“I would also like to express my appreciation to the National Bank and to the Ministry of Finance of Georgia for encouraging this type of funding structure, eliminating FX risks.

“Georgia will provide a good example and we hope we’ll be able to offer similar products to other countries in the Black Sea region.”