MIGA issued a $14.3 million (€13.8 million) guarantee to Hypo Alpe-Adria-Bank AG of Austria for its $15.9 equity investment in Kristal Banka AD Banja Luka in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The guarantee is for a period of ten years and provides coverage against the risks of Expropriation and War and Civil Disturbance.
The project involves the recapitalization of Kristal Banka and further expansion of its lending activities. In addition to increasing the capacity of the financial sector, the project is expected to benefit the local economy by on-lending to a variety of businesses in the food, wood, construction, and transportation sectors.
The Kristal Banka Banja Luka project has numerous direct and indirect development impacts for Bosnia and Herzegovina. In addition to increasing its lending activities with longer tenors, the Bank will facilitate the foregoing process of privatization in Bosnia, generate competitive pricing and terms, and provide know-how, technical solutions, and new products to the Bosnia market. The project is expected to indirectly create an estimated 5,000 jobs and protect a significant number of jobs that would have been at risk given Kristal Banka's financial situation before the acquisition. Moreover, the project will provide extensive training for bank employees. While the project will not directly contribute to export earnings, the expansion of funds to local businesses is expected to facilitate up to $50 million in exports annually.
Although the project is not an SME project, the bank will provide loans to SMEs in need of financing and addresses one of MIGA's priority areas, an investment in an IDA country.