More loans being issued to enterprises

By Evgenia Tzortzi

Bank loans approved in April via the funding instruments introduced by the Development Ministry amounted to 1.6 billion euros, posting a 10 percent increase from the previous month. Despite this positive development, credit expansion remained in negative territory last month at a rate of -3.7 percent, slowing from -4.1 percent in March.

During a meeting on Wednesday between Development Minister Costis Hatzidakis and the president of the Hellenic Bank Association, Giorgos Zannias, the latter commented that the data point to the fact that “the market is beginning to acquire a certain momentum.”

He added that “this is a long process, showing that every month 150 to 200 million euros is added to the credit issued.”

A considerable part of the new disbursements is from the funds from the European Investment Bank and the National Fund for Entrepreneurship and Growth (ETEAN).

Greek lenders have also said that by the end of next month they will have signed contracts with the Institution for Growth in Greece (IfG), which will refinance loans to small and medium-sized enterprises.