Photograph: en.wikipedia.org / Sdrawkcab

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has signed a EUR 10 million lending agreement with Privredna Banka Zagreb (PBZ) to support micro, small and medium enterprises in Croatia that are run or owned by women, the two banks announced on Monday.

The EBRD's Director for Croatia, Vedrana Jelusic Kasic, said that this credit line was yet another example of successful cooperation between PBZ and the EBRD. "Supporting the businesses of women entrepreneurs helps increase Gross National Product through increased activity of several business entities. There is considerable entrepreneurial potential among women and it is important to support it," she said.

PBZ Board member Ivan Gerovac said that PBZ "is highly committed to providing support to women entrepreneurs and hopes that the new special product financed by the EBRD will facilitate their access to the market."

The credit line is supported by the EBRD's Women in Business Programme that promotes women entrepreneurship and the participation of women in business. The programme, designed with the financial support of the EBRD and the Taiwan Business-EBRD Cooperation Funds, also offers advisory services.

The EBRD has invested a total of EUR 3.2 billion in 182 projects in Croatia since the country became independent in the early 1990s. The bank's activities cover various sectors of the economy, notably infrastructure, business, financial institutions and energy.

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