EIB and Intesa Sanpaolo sign joint loan to tackle unemployment

The European Investment Bank and Italy’s Intesa Sanpaolo have entered an agreement to provide €240m to support youth employment in SMEs, innovative start-ups and social projects.

The EIB and Intesa Sanpaolo have signed the first joint loan in Italy aimed at creating new jobs for young people in small and medium-sized firms, mid caps and innovative start-ups.

The €120m operation comes seven months after the European Council’s Brussels Summit on combating youth unemployment in June 2013. During the meeting, the EU’s heads of State or Government called on the EIB, the EU’s financing institution, to deploy “without delay” all instruments at its disposal to tackle the growing problem of unemployment – especially youth unemployment.

The €120m EIB credit line will be channelled by Mediocredito Italiano, the corporate financing arm of the Intesa Sanpaolo group, to SMEs, midcaps and innovative start-ups in order to foster the creation of new jobs for young people in the 15 to 29 age group and promote the development of a new,
more innovation-friendly entrepreneurial culture.

“I am particularly proud of this operation with Intesa Sanpaolo, the first in a series of loans with Italy’s banks under the EIB’s Jobs for Youth programme. Following the European Council’s request last June, which the Italian Government has vigorously driven forward, operations like this provide the best demonstration of the EU institutions’ capacity to provide a rapid and practical response to the social emergency that is the sky-high level of
youth unemployment”, said EIB Vice-President Dario Scannapieco.

“We are delighted to be the EIB’s principal European partner in terms of both volume of business and range of areas of support for Italian firms” said Carlo Messina, CEO of Intesa Sanpaolo.

SMEs (firms with up to 250 employees) and mid caps (firms with between 250 and 3000 employees) that meet at least one of the following criteria will be eligible for loans:

– they have hired at least one worker (three in the case of mid caps) aged between 15 and 29 in the six months prior to the loan request or will do so in the following six months;
– they provide vocational training programmes or internships for young people;
– they work together with a school, technical college or university to employ
young people (e.g. in summer internships);
– they have an ownership structure in which the majority of the capital (over 50%) is held by young people under 29 years of age;
– they comply with the provisions of Law 99 of 2013 on the promotion of youth employment.

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