The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) will issue a long-term loan of up to $20 million to Astarta, a Ukrainian agro-industrial holding, to finance working capital necessary for plant growing, sugar beets and soybeans processing. EBRD Senior Adviser on External Relations Anton Usov told Interfax-Ukraine the board of directors made a corresponding decision at a meeting on July 18.
The bank says its funding will also contribute to improving efficiency and productivity through the introduction of modern IT solutions and farming practices and support of stronger ties with local suppliers.
According to information on the EBRD’s website, the overall valuation of the project is estimated at $242 million.
As reported, the EBRD in October 2017 issued a $25 million loan to Astarta for seven years for the construction and purchase of sugar and grain storage facilities.
Astarta is a vertically integrated agro-industrial holding that operates in eight regions of Ukraine. The holding includes eight sugar factories, agricultural enterprises with a land bank of about 250,000 hectares and dairy farms.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has approved a new program USELF III (Ukraine Sustainable Energy Lending Facility) worth EUR 250 million to support private projects in renewable energy in Ukraine. EBRD Senior Adviser for External Relations Anton Usov told Interfax-Ukraine the board of directors made the corresponding decision at a meeting on July 18. The bank said it has been supporting the development of renewable energy in Ukraine within the framework of the USELF program since 2009, but it expires on June 30, 2018, and USELF III should replace it.
During the first program, the bank financed projects for total of more than EUR 100 million to fund projects with a total capacity of over 150 MW of various renewable energy technologies, the document says. The EBRD notes that as a result of the development of the renewable energy sector, interest from large international developers is growing, and they are ready to implement larger projects in the field of renewable energy.
The bank also says that despite the significant growth of the sector in Ukraine, its share remains insignificant at 1.5%, while the National Action Plan for Renewable Energy envisages the increase of this share to 11% by 2020.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) will provide a loan of EUR10 million to Kyivsky cardboard and paper mill (KCPM), a leading company in the sector and based outside Ukraine’s capital. This will be a seven-year loan to boost energy efficiency and reduce CO2 emissions, the EBRD said in a statement on July 13. The purchase of a shoe press for cardboard drying will help KCPM reduce the use of steam, increase production volumes and improve the quality of coated cardboard. The replacement of pumps will halve the electricity needs of this equipment. Combined annual savings are expected to reach up to EUR2 million.
New converting and packing lines for the production of tissues will be procured as part of the project and will allow the company to widen its range of products for use in office buildings, hotels, schools and airports. It will also help KCPM increase its domestic and export sales, including those to the EU.
KCPM will upgrade its waste-paper processing equipment, which will allow the firm to improve the quality – and reduce the cost of cardboard production. These improvements will make it possible to reprocess waste paper up to four times. This will be the first production cycle in the country to implement the EU principles of using fewer resources and increasing energy efficiency.
The investments are expected to reduce the company’s annual CO2e emissions by up to 11,000 tonnes. Kyivsky cardboard paper mill is one of the largest cardboard and paper producers in Europe. It employs almost 2,200 people. It sells produce to almost 700 companies in Ukraine, some CIS member states and the rest of the world. In 2017, the mill saw a 14.8% rise in production from 2016, to UAH 4.85 billion. The mill is owned by Pulp Mill Holding GmbH (Austria), its ultimate beneficiary is businessman Volodymyr Krupchak.
The EBRD is the largest international financial investor in Ukraine. Since the start of its operations in the country in 1993, the Bank has made a cumulative commitment of almost EUR 12.1 billion across some 400 projects in Ukraine.
First Vice President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Jurgen Rigterink believes that Ukraine is an important area of investment for the EBRD and a powerful platform for the implementation of major projects. “I’ve been EBRD first vice president for just nine weeks, and the fact that I am currently on a visit to Ukraine speaks about the importance of your country in our project portfolio. For us, Ukraine is not only an investment area, but also an important platform for cooperation in a number of projects that we are implementing jointly with other international partners,” Rigterink said at a meeting with Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman in Kyiv on Thursday.
Groysman, in turn, noted that cooperation between Ukraine and the EBRD has the potential for growth.
“The bank is one of the largest investors in the Ukrainian economy, and now we are talking about strengthening cooperation and increasing its effectiveness,” he said.
Rigterink also recalled that the EBRD is now processing a five-year work plan in Ukraine, which includes, among other things, increased funding and in-depth cooperation in specific areas – primarily the work of government banks and the development of the energy sector.
According to Groysman, the Ukrainian government is interested in further cooperation with the EBRD on modernization of the gas transit system, as well as in raising funds to increase natural gas production and develop green energy.
“We are now at the point where the economy will grow and investments will increase. I feel it and I see it. This is the scenario I’m programmed to. The situation as a whole is getting stabilized, and this is a very good signal. Even despite the fact that we are entering the electoral period, the government is ready to ensure a forward movement,” he said.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is preparing the new Ukraine Sustainable Energy Lending Facility (USELF-III) for the amount of EUR 250 million, the bank has reported on its website. “Therefore, to continue supporting the Ukrainian renewable energy sector, the EBRD, intends to commit an envelope of EUR 250 million from its own resources to finance new private renewable energy projects in Ukraine,” the bank said.
EBRD launched USELF in 2009 to support and finance the first non-large hydropower renewable energy projects in Ukraine. The original Ukraine Sustainable Energy Lending Facility (USELF) is set to expire on June 30, 2018. Since inception, the facility has invested more than EUR 100 million to finance over 150 MW across all renewable energy technologies.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) could provide a senior secured long-term loan of up to $20 million to finance working capital of Astarta agricultural holding. According to a report on the bank’s website, the decision could be made on June 18.
The project will support the company in development and implementation of cooperation with local universities and schools, contributing to improved access to training and employment opportunities for young people.
In addition, the project is expected to contribute to significant efficiency and productivity gains through introduction of modern IT solutions and farming techniques as well as to support development of stronger backward linkages to local suppliers.
The total cost of the project is $242 million.
As reported, the EBRD in October 2017 provided a $25 million loan for seven years to build and buy sugar and grain storage facilities.
Astarta is a vertically integrated agro-industrial holding operating in Poltava, Vinnytsia, Khmelnytsky, Ternopil, Zhytomyr, Chernihiv, Cherkasy and Kharkiv regions.