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14 Feb 2017

Raiffeisen International to grant some €15m for upgrading fleet of Belarusian freight carriers

MINSK, 14 February (BelTA) – Austria’s Raiffeisen Bank International will provide up to €15 million through its subsidiaries Priorbank and Raiffeisen Leasing for upgrading the fleet of Belarusian freight carriers, BelTA learned from the Priorbank press service.

“The investment project will run for a year and attract up to €15 million to the Belarusian economy. The funds will be used to upgrade the vehicle fleet of Belarusian freight carriers. Freight forwarders will be able to buy over 150 modern long-haul trucks of the Euro 6 environmental standard. The money will be provided on leasing terms for up to five years at 8.5% interest rate in euros,” the bank representatives explained.

The year 2016 was a crucial year for freight carriers in Belarus. After several years of decline in the flow of goods in the region, the market started to recover. The Association of International Road Carriers BAMAP reported that the export of services in 2016 totaled $900 million, up by 5% from 2015. “The market is getting stable, the cargo business is on the rise. In the coming years, we will see the export reach the mark of $1 billion,” said Natalia Vysotskaya, BAMAP Deputy Director General. The environmental characteristics of the vehicle fleet are becoming particularly important. Today, Euro 5 trucks account for 60% of the Belarusian fleet, with Euro 6 vehicles making up no more than 2%. “The ability of freight carriers to compete on the European market will depend on the quality and characteristics of the fleet,” Natalia Vysotskaya stressed.

European companies seek to enter the markets of the CIS member states. “They are particularly interested in the Belarusian market due to its geographical location at the junction of the West-East and North-South transport corridors. Besides, the country is an active participant of integration projects, including the Silk Road Economic Belt, which will boost the development of the transport sector in Belarus. The country demonstrates economic stability despite the economic turbulence in its neighboring countries over the past year. This gives reason to foreign investors, in particular those working in transport and logistics, to believe in potential success of projects in this market,” said Michael Hackl, CEO of Raiffeisen-Leasing International.

Raiffeisen Bank International is one of the leading banking groups in Austria. It is headquartered in Vienna, and it has a subsidiary in Belarus, Priorbank.

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