Development Finance Climate Action & Green Transition Skills & Employment

EIB’s SME financing project in Armenia

Project Details


European Investment Bank (EIB)




Armenia / Eastern Europe & Central Asia


Banking & SME Finance

Inclusive Finance

Environmental & Social Impact


SME Finance

Women in Business

E&S Risk Management


Gernot Kuhlisch

EIB commissioned a technical assistance project to support the implementation of the EIB APEX loan for SMEs in Armenia, which was extended to the Central Bank of Armenia and is handled by the German-Armenian Fund (GAF). IPC was contracted by EIB to support the expansion of sustainable lending to SMEs in the agricultural and tourism sectors with the aim of broadening and deepening the financial sector, promoting private sector development, and securing employment and income in rural areas in Armenia.

Consultancy services to GAF

  • ensuring successful implementation of the EIB APEX loan and assisting GAF in monitoring to ensure sub-projects meet EIB standards
  • clarifying GAF responsibilities under relevant CBA regulations for co-ordination of EIB APEX loans, and amending and/or developing new CBA and/or other regulatory documentation to ensure full and up-to-date authorisation and operating structures for GAF under EIB APEX loans
  • reviewing GAF and EIB internal rules and regulations regarding co-operation with partner financial institutions (PFIs) in comparable programmes
  • working closely with relevant GAF staff and management to define open and transparent procedures as well as templates/questionnaires establishing selection criteria for the loan
  • assessing GAF, PFI and final beneficiary compliance with EIB procurement rules
  • preparing performance reports on the whole TA programme as well as project completion reports for the facility in line with EIB requirements
  • analysing the target segment: desk review, on-site data collection and interviews, and assessing potential for agricultural and tourism finance
  • improving the financial literacy of final beneficiaries (particularly SMEs run by women) in agriculture and tourism

Consultancy services to PFIs

  • developing tailor-made institution/capacity building programmes for PFIs
  • strengthening institutional capacities of partner banks and credit organisations in agricultural and tourism finance
  • improving PFI capabilities to assess environmental and climate risks of agricultural investments
  • developing dedicated environmental, social and climate capacity at PFIs
  • reviewing agricultural and tourism lending processes at PFIs
  • providing consulting services and on-the-job mentoring, including supporting PFIs in preparing loan allocation requests to the EIB
  • assisting PFIs in developing loan products for agricultural and tourism lending as well as market strategy and marketing activities, incl. workshops with final beneficiaries (particularly SMEs run by women) and promoting agriculture and tourism investments using booklets developed jointly with EIB
  • providing IT support for credit processes and establishing a standardised MIS package that satisfies the expectations and needs of the PFIs: developing an approach to advising PFIs and analysing IT systems, formulating targeted recommendations and conducting comprehensive training sessions
  • designing, implementing and organising training on EIB procedures for PFI staff: identification and selection of the required curricula and course design, selection of participants, establishing a training participation and results database
  • implementing trainings, including train-the-trainer measures

Key Achievements & Media

17 partner institutions nationwide
>1.000 final beneficiaries trained
>250 women-led SMEs trained
>EUR 90m disbursed to SMEs/MidCaps
>150 projects financed
>600 bank staff trained
Eligibility and procedures


About Contact