A consortium of nine banks, including the EBRD, approved a loan of EUR 230 million to the two largest subsidiaries of the SIJ group. The Slovenian steelmaker said it would refinance its debt and invest in energy efficiency as part of its decarbonization efforts.
Nova Ljubljanska banka (NLB) leads a group of nine foreign and domestic lenders who have signed a seven-year syndicated agreement worth €230 million with the largest steel companies in the SIJ group – SIJ Acroni and SIJ Metal Ravne . The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development has announced that it will participate with 25 million euros to support the Slovenian industrial producer’s efforts to further reduce its environmental impact.
The SIJ Group revealed that it would use the funds to refinance its loan portfolio, provide additional liquidity and invest in its development and in improving its environmental efficiency. In its strategy to 2025, the steelmaker is committed to increasing production efficiency and sustainability, especially in environmental projects, and to operating according to the principles of the circular economy and efficiency energy.
The EBRD’s share of the loan will be partly used to improve ESG reporting
The EBRD said its funds would be spent on capital expenditure for improving energy efficiency at SIJ’s production sites in Jesenice and Ravne na Koroškem, contributing to the company’s decarbonization efforts and meeting the criteria a substantial contribution to the mitigation of climate change according to the taxonomy of the European Union.
The international financial institution’s participation will help the steelmaker improve its climate-related financial disclosures, the announcement adds.
“We are delighted to extend our collaboration with SIJ, one of the world’s most efficient steel producers, and to fund their ongoing efforts to further reduce the environmental footprint of their operations and improve their climate-related disclosures.” , said the EBRD’s global head of manufacturing and services. says Frederic Lucenet.
SIJ Group Chief Financial Officer Igor Malevanov expressed his gratitude for the bank’s support in the company’s efforts to improve its reporting on its environmental, social and corporate governance, or ESG.
Production is based on 100% scrap
The SIJ Group already has one of the lowest carbon footprints in the global steel industry and manufactures its products from 100% recyclable steel scrap, the EBRD said.
Other members of the banking group are Nova Kreditna banka Maribor, the state export and development bank SID, SKB banka, Erste Group Bank, Banka Sparkasse, Banka Intesa Sanpaolo and UniCredit Banka Slovenia.
NLB noted that it had arranged a sale of 13 million euros of bonds and 30 million euros of short-term debt for the SIJ group in December.