Romania gets European Commission’s green light for €1.6bn investment and development bank

Romania gets European Commission’s green light for €1.6bn investment and development bank
/ bne IntelliNews
By Iulian Ernst in Bucharest February 1, 2023

The European Commission (EC) has allowed the Romanian government, under EU state aid rules, to set up the Romanian Investment and Development Bank with an initial capital of €1.6bn.

The bank will be entrusted with addressing market failures and supporting economic development and investment opportunities. It will intervene to ensure access to financing in areas where there is insufficient availability in the market, with a focus on providing funding to small and medium-sized companies, including micro-enterprises and start-ups. 

The bank may also support infrastructure projects aiming at improving productivity in the Romanian economy, as these projects usually require long-term financing that is difficult to secure on the market.

It will be established as an entity fully owned by the state, with the Ministry of Finance as a shareholder; it will carry out its activity under the supervision of the National Bank of Romania (BNR).

“The bank will ensure access to finance, especially to those small and medium-sized companies that struggle to get sufficient support from the market. This will strengthen the competitiveness and sustainability of companies operating in the EU, while at the same time ensuring that competition is not unduly distorted,” stated Margrethe Vestager, European Commission Executive Vice-President in charge of competition policy.

Out of the €1.6bn initial capital, up to €608mn will be provided as a capital injection, with €10mn to be received in 2024 under the Recovery and Resilience Facility, and €992mn will be provided in state guarantees. The measure includes a €1.4mn grant as well.