A municipal credit fund with pooled resources from the ethical finance entities Fiare and Coop 57 means greater access to funding for initiatives from the social and solidarity economy. The fund covers the eventual financial risk faced by initiatives entitled to specific new credit lines offered by each entity, each for one million euros.
The municipal credit fund involves a contribution of 100,000 euros each from the City Council and the two ethical finance entities. The fund will only become active should companies or projects not be able to cover the payment of credit extended to them.
The First Deputy Mayor, Gerardo Pisarello, declared that backing for the social and solidarity economy forms part of the city’s DNA and international reputation: “This public-community collaboration shows that a new way of managing the economy and democratising credit is possible”.
Some projects have already been funded with the specially-created credit lines, thanks to the existence of this fund. Fiare and Coop57 have opened up lines of a million euros each. The risks generated by initiatives eligible for this credit may eventually be covered by the pooled fund of 100,000 euros if necessary.
Some of the projects which have already been financed thanks to the fund include the work cooperative Art & Coop, SCCL; two projects with a clear feminist perspective, La Raposa and Xarxa DDiPAS; the architects’ cooperative La Baula, and the cooperative bookshop La Carbonera.
The credit has also enabled two commercial companies which had ceased their activity for different reasons to become cooperatives: the school Nou Patufet, SCCL, and the gymnasium Gimnàs Sant Pau, SCCL.
The initiative forms part of the plan to boost the social and solidarity economy between 2016 and 2019, the overall aim being to strengthen and promote initiatives working with social justice criteria. The fund comes in addition to other initiatives, such as the package of subsidies for the value of 4 million euros aimed at entities from the social and solidarity economy, and the backing provided for socio-economic projects in the neighbourhoods.