The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and EU4Business are providing loans and investment support to the Ukrainian pharmaceutical producer Ecopharm, so that it can build a new export-oriented manufacturing facility in the town of Slavuta in Khmelnytskyi region, western Ukraine.
A seven-year loan from the EBRD, worth up to €3.6 million, will also help buy state-of-the-art equipment for the plant, which must comply with good manufacturing practices (GMP) and regulations requiring that drugs manufacturers take proactive steps to ensure their products are “safe, pure and effective”.
The loan comes under the EBRD Direct Financing Framework designed to offer SMEs streamlined and easier access to funding with longer maturities. Investment support under the EU4Business programme will aid the project implementation.
Ecopharm, established in 1998 and active across CIS countries, specialises in the manufacturing of patented herbal antivirus medicines. The EBRD financing will also help Ecopharm increase exports to the CIS market, enhance its research and development capacity and ensure full compliance with GMP standards.
The EU and EBRD signed an agreement under the EU4Business initiative to provide up to €28 million for business advice, information, training and other support to SMEs in Ukraine. The assistance includes the creation of a network of business support centres across Ukraine and also envisages a further €12 million of EU4Business funds to support the EBRD’s direct financing of small enterprises.