COVESTRO
EUR 225m loan from EIB to boost R&D / EU bank backs coronavirus pandemic aid to SMEs
German engineering plastics producer Covestro (Leverkusen; www.covestro.com) has agreed a EUR 225m loan facility with the European Investment Bank (EIB, Luxembourg; www.eib.com), lending arm of the European Union, to secure medium-term funding for research and development in the areas of sustainability and circular economy within its EU operations. Covestro said it began working with EIB last year to identify R&D projects that could meet the bank’s financing criteria requiring high standards of technical, ecological and social responsibility.

The EIB loan complements the polycarbonate and polyurethane specialist’s recently renewed syndicated revolving credit facility of EUR 2.5 bn with interest rate linked to its environment, social and governance (ESG) rating. CFO Thomas Toepfer said the EIB cash injection “provides us with additional financial flexibility to push forward our strategic focus in the areas of sustainability and the circular economy.”

In autumn 2019, Covestro published a global strategic programme to promote the topic of circular economy throughout all areas of the company. Its main principles are to improve recycling of plastics waste, in addition to developing innovative technical and production methods to using alternative raw materials such as non-fossil resources. As far as possible, it will seek to use raw materials from sustainable sources such as waste, plants and CO2 in its production, CEO Markus Steilemann explained at “K 2019” – see Plasteurope.com of 17.10.2019.
Regular business and pandemic aid both essential
“In times when member states and EU institutions are putting in place multi-billion euro programmes in response to the crisis caused by Covid-19, it is also important to demonstrate that we are continuing our regular business in support of companies,” said EIB vice president Ambroise Fayolle, responsible for the bank’s operations in Germany and innovation. Support for the climate and environment is among the EIB’s top priorities, he added.

Helping European businesses over the economic chasm that could result from the coronavirus pandemic is, of course, also a high priority. The EU bank said it is focusing on assisting small and medium companies (SMEs) and mid-caps as a contribution to developing a substantial financial package that can be rolled out straight away, without recourse to new legislation. The EIB group that includes the European Investment Fund (EIF) specialising in support for SMEs has proposed a plan to mobilise up to EUR 40 bn in financing. This would go toward bridging loans, credit holidays and other measures designed to alleviate liquidity and working capital constraints. To this end, the group is working through financial intermediaries in the member states and in partnership with national promotional banks.
01.04.2020 Plasteurope.com [244832-0]
Published on 01.04.2020
Covestro: 225 Mio EUR Europa-Kredit für die KreislaufwirtschaftGerman version of this article...

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