EBRD has noticed the lack of long-term, suitable funding in Republic of Macedonia for the investments needed in order to harmonize companies operation with EU standards, so the bank has provided a favourable credit line of 20 million Euros for financing investments of small and medium sized companies, which will be placed through three national banks.
The investments should lead to improving the environmental performance of the companies and promote occupational health and safety standards, environmental standards and the quality of their products.
For every potential client, the project consultants identified the following:
А. The status of compliance of the company with the standards defined in the national legislation and the requirements of EU Directives in the following areas:
1) Environment -implementation of obligations stemming from environmental permits with regard to integrated pollution prevention and control, water management, managing different waste streams, air emissions management, and introduction of environmental management systems –EMAS and ISO 14001, series of standards etc.;
2) Occupational health and safety -safe management of chemicals, explosive devices, use of protection equipment, exposure to noise, vibrations, introduction of OHSAS 18001 standard etc.;
3) Quality of products and services -introduction and maintenance of management systems ISO 9000, certification of products and services etc. ;
B. Investments needed in order to correct the present incompliance and they may cover:
- Investments in industrial plants,
- Improvement in the management of the company and
- General improvement which will ensure compliance with the requirements of one or several EU Directives;
C. Defining the benefits of the company from achieving EU standards with regard to improving competitiveness, increasing production capacities;
D. Preparation of a business plan which is submitted by the owner of the company to one of the three banks for obtaining a credit loan by accepting the conditions of the bank.
E. After implementing the investment in agreement with the Business Plan, the project consultants monitor the investment activities and assist the clients in the preparation of the verification documents.
What are the benefits for the clients?
А) Free of charge consulting service, given by the project consultants
Б) Acquiring a non-refundable incentive amounting to 10-20% of the loan for the implementation of the investment, provided by EU
В) One step closer to EU markets.
So far, the team of project consultants has developed 53 Business Plans for small and medium sized enterprises from different sectors (printing industry, food industry, processing of wood and construction materials, car selling companies and car repair shops, agricultural services, production of plastic materials, service companies, glass cutting services etc.), and about 12 companies have finalized their investments and have obtained the non-refundable grant (reed more – reference list of small and medium enterprises which participated in the project and which were scanned by our environment, occupational health and safety and quality of products experts).