NMB Bank and the European Investment Bank (EIB) on Wednesday 1 June 2022, formally announced a new EUR12,5 million, 7-year facility to support business investment across Zimbabwe.
Numerous representatives from both government and business graced the event. These included Mr. Bernard De Schrevel, Head of Agriculture, Private Sector and Trade of the European Union Delegation to Zimbabwe, the Governor of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, Dr. John Mangudya, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, George Guvamatanga, Director Banking Supervision, Mr. Madamombe, NMB Bank CEO Gerald Gore and European Investment Bank Representative to Southern Africa and Indian Ocean, Jim Hodges.
NMB Bank took this opportunity to communicate some of its intended plans with the facility. Speaking at the event, NMB Chief Executive, Gerald Gore said “The market has been starved of long term, fairly priced offshore credit facilities. This type of funding is key for our industries to retool, invest in new technologies and keep abreast with international trends in order to compete on the global arena.”
The line comes at a time NMB Bank has been working on growing its Agribusiness as well as the Portfolio of exporters, both, which play a critical role in the country’s economy. The Bank is working on supporting the private sector including exporters in key areas of the economy with the right type of funding. He further added that their focus for this line was to fund agriculture, horticulture and manufacturing exporting clients. “The facility is not necessarily restricted to current NMB Bank customers, but open to exporters who want to scale up production and even new companies that are export- orientated. The intention is to complement government’s efforts to promote exports and boost the country’s economy”, he said.
“The European Investment Bank is committed to working with local financial partners to enhance access to finance by Zimbabwean entrepreneurs and businesses. Unlocking investment is crucial to enable business expansion and address economic challenges enhanced by COVID-19. As part of Team Europe, the European Investment Bank is pleased to provide EUR 12.5 million of new targeted financing to NMB that will strengthen private sector investment, create jobs and accelerate the post-pandemic recovery of Zimbabwe. Today’s new agreement demonstrates how Team Europe and African partners are joining forces to back business growth.” said Jim Hodges, Head of EIB Regional Representation for Southern Africa and Indian Ocean
“Given the challenging economic environment we are pleased that more support will be locally available. The Zimbabwean private sector plays a big role in supporting employment, food security and access to export markets. Therefore, support for financial institutions and private sector enterprises creates an opportunity that has a significant impact on the lives of many citizens.” said Mr Bernard De Schrevel, Head of Agriculture, Private Sector and Trade, European Union Delegation to Zimbabwe.
Mr. Gore explained how EIB had conducted a rigorous due diligence on NMB Bank and he was happy that EIB had expressed confidence that NMB Bank would both preserve their investment and partner with them on their developmental objectives. “Our main attraction to EIB is their developmental thrust as they seek to promote private investments in businesses that are economically viable, financially profitable, environmentally sustainable and socially equitable”
“Allow me to once again express my sincere gratitude to the European Investment Bank, for partnering with Zimbabwe and specifically NMB Bank in spurring economic growth within the country”, Mr. Gore said in conclusion
The European Investment Bank (EIB) is the long-term lending institution of the European Union owned by its Member States. It makes long-term finance available for sound investment in order to contribute towards EU policy goals. EIB Global is the EIB Group’s new specialised arm dedicated to increasing the impact of international partnerships and development finance. EIB Global is designed to foster strong, focused partnership within Team Europe, alongside fellow development finance institutions, and civil society. EIB Global brings the Group closer to local people, companies and institutions through our offices across the world.
NMB Bank Limited is a registered commercial bank and the principal subsidiary of NMBZ, a Zimbabwean-based investment holding company listed on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange.