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The OPEC Fund signs US$20m loan to support SMEs in Uzbekistan
Vienna, Austria, May 8, 2020. The OPEC Fund for International Development (the OPEC Fund) has signed a loan agreement of US$20 million in favor of Uzbek Industrial and Construction JSC Bank (Uzpromstroybank) in Uzbekistan to support the trade finance requirements of local businesses.
The loan will enable Uzpromstroybank to expand access to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), an important driver of economic growth and job creation. The Bank will extend trade loans to finance sub-borrowers in different sectors such as agriculture, healthcare, construction and textiles.
Reforms initiated by the Uzbekistan government are opening up the country’s economy and encouraging private sector investment. The OPEC Fund is supporting Uzpromstroybank as it grows its SME portfolio, leveraging its existing SME client base of more than 23,000 clients. This partnership will improve access to trade finance for local companies.
“The OPEC Fund has long supported socio-economic development in Uzbekistan, but this is our first trade finance transaction with a financial institution,” said OPEC Fund Director-General Dr Abdulhamid Alkhalifa. “The transaction is a good example of how the private sector can contribute to development, and we are pleased to support SMEs – a vital sector in any economy – to help Uzbekistan make progress toward Sustainable Development Goal 8 on inclusive and sustainable economic growth and decent employment.”
The OPEC Fund and Uzbekistan have worked together in the name of socio-economic development for more than two decades.
About the OPEC Fund
The OPEC Fund is a development finance institution established by the member states of OPEC in 1976. The OPEC Fund works in cooperation with developing country partners and the international donor community to stimulate economic growth and alleviate poverty in all disadvantaged regions of the world. It does this by providing financing to build essential infrastructure, strengthen social services and promote productivity, competitiveness and trade. The OPEC Fund's work is people-centered, focusing on projects that meet basic needs – such as food, energy, clean water and sanitation, healthcare and education. The OPEC Fund aims to encourage self-reliance and inspire hope for the future.