National operational programme SME Initiative


Additional tools


Programme description

Main objectives

The programme covers Italy's contribution to the Small&Medium Enterprises (SME) Initiative. Through this, Italy will make a contribution of EUR 100 million to the initiative, from its 2014-2020 European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) allocation, which is expected to generate more than EUR 600 million in new financing made available to Italian SMEs. Access to finance for SMEs located in the Mezzogiorno will be significantly facilitated, to incentivise them to continue to invest in the economy and to create jobs.

In fact, EU funding will be used to implement a new financial instrument consisting of securitization of portfolios of existing loans to Italian SMEs and mid-caps, in the books of banks operating in Italy, against the banks' commitment to generate portfolios of new loans to SMEs located in the less developed and transition regions of Italy, for an amount at least six times the programme contribution.

At the same time the Italian Authorities will devote additional national resources for an amount equivalent to the EU contribution, to be committed outside the programme. A similar multiplier as for the EU contribution should also be achieved with the national contribution, to reach an overall cumulative volume of new loans of some EUR 1.2 billion.

Funding priorities

The Programme will focus on one single priority "Improvement of access to credit for SMEs in the Mezzogiorno".

Expected results

  • The share of SME loans ranging between EUR 30.000 and EUR 500.000 in relation to the overall volume of credit is expected to increase from 23.83 % to 27.95% for the less developed regions and from 24.09% to 25% for the transition regions

  • Bank financing to enterprises as a percentage of GDP is expected to increase from 38.29% to 46.42 % for the less developed regions and from 44.51% to 49.68% for the transition regions.


  • Italy
    • SUD
    • Abruzzo
    • Molise
    • Campania
    • Puglia
    • Basilicata
    • Calabria
    • Sicilia


  • Regional Development Fund (ERDF): 320,000,000.00 €

Thematic priorities

  • TO3 - SMEs competitiveness

Financial information

Total OP budget: 322,500,000.00 €

Total EU contribution: 320,000,000.00 €

CCI number: 2015IT16RFSM001