The Juncker Plan has backed four European Investment Fund agreements with two financial intermediaries are expected to unlock €420 million in financing for an estimated 2,000 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Greece, the European Commission said on April 27.

The agreements with Alpha Bank and Piraeus Bank will allow these small businesses to access the finance they need to expand their operations, create new jobs and invest in research and innovation.

The support of the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the central pillar of the Juncker Plan, was a crucial factor in making these transactions possible.

Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos noted that facilitating access to finance for small and medium-sized businesses is a crucial element of the European Commission’s strategy to promote jobs and growth in Greece and across Europe.

“Greek small and medium-sized enterprises are already benefiting from loans made possible by the Juncker Plan. Today’s (April 27) agreements will allow some 2,000 more SMEs to finance expansion, innovation and job-creation which will, in turn, contribute to securing Greece’s economic recovery,” Avramopoulos, who attended the signing ceremony on April 27, added.

The Junker Plan is already expected to mobilise over €3 billion in investments in Greece and €183.5 billion across the EU.