August 2 (VoirNews) – The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) announced on Tuesday the launch of the Youth in Business program in Albania, which involves a loan of one million euros ($1.1 million) , as well as capacity building, business advice and training. .
The loan will be provided to the local Union Bank for on-lending to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) owned or run by entrepreneurs under the age of 35, the EBRD said in a press release.
Young entrepreneurs will be advised on the digitalization of business processes and trained in digital solutions and tools, thanks to funds for technical cooperation provided by the Swedish, Italian and Luxembourg governments.
The goal is to financially include young entrepreneurs despite the obstacles presented by insufficient collateral, limited credit history and lack of business experience.
Albania becomes the fifth Western Balkan country to benefit from this program, after Kosovo, Serbia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Montenegro. The EBRD’s Western Balkans Young Entrepreneurs program plans to provide a total of €100 million to local banks in the region over the coming years. In addition to financing, the Bank will provide advisory services in the form of consultancy projects, e-learning and training, the bank said.