Kazakhstan’s women and small businesses to benefit from EBRD finance

NUR-SULTAN (TCA) — Small enterprises and women-led businesses in Kazakhstan are set to benefit from a US $40 million loan package provided by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) for Bank CenterCredit (BCC), a leading local lender, the EBRD said on December 12.

A loan of up to US$30 million will support micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in line with the EBRD’s strategy for Kazakhstan and the country’s efforts to diversify its economy. Small private companies will benefit from better access to finance, especially in remote areas of the country.

The second part is a loan of up to US$10 million in support of women-led businesses. The loan builds on successful previous engagement to strengthen the role of women in the economy. For the first time funding will be provided to local entrepreneurs without support of a first loss risk cover.

Both loans will be extended in local currency, eliminating exchange rate risks for borrowers. The funds will also be combined with technical assistance and advisory services such as development of entrepreneurial skills, business coaching, quality management and many more.

BCC is the fifth largest bank in Kazakhstan with a developed branch network covering all regions in the country. The bank is an established partner of the EBRD in small business and women financing. It has successfully implemented previous projects and is well positioned to further expand lending to these segments.

To date, the EBRD has invested over €8.2 billion (US$ 9.1 billion equivalent) through 263 projects in the economy of Kazakhstan. The Bank is the largest international investor in the country’s economy outside of the oil and gas sectors and has a wide presence in Kazakhstan, with two resident offices in Nur-Sultan and Almaty as well as five local offices for outreach in remote areas of the country.

Sergey Kwan


Sergey Kwan has worked for The Times of Central Asia as a journalist, translator and editor since its foundation in March 1999. Prior to this, from 1996-1997, he worked as a translator at The Kyrgyzstan Chronicle, and from 1997-1999, as a translator at The Central Asian Post.
Kwan studied at the Bishkek Polytechnic Institute from 1990-1994, before completing his training in print journalism in Denmark.

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