Romanian Public Finance minister Sebastian Vladescu and European Investment Bank vice-president Matthias Kollatz-Ahnen signed the Agreement on guaranty on Thursday, January 21 2010, worth of 320 million euros that the Government will grant on top of the 400 million euros loan Ford got from EIB. Ford will use the funds to expand and equip the production facilities from Craiova (South).

Romania guarantees 80% of the Ford loan from the European Commission. PM Emil Boc was present when the Agreement was signed.

"The agreement will finance the investments in the plant from Craiova for facilities and equipment needed for the production of a new class B car", the BEI communiqué shows. According to it, the car is meant to have a low fuel consumption and a small engine. The expansion of the production is expected to bring an annual out put of 300,000 cars and 300,000 engines.

"We hope that by guaranteeing the loan we will give Ford plant in Craiova and the company's investments in Romania a fresh input", PM Emil Boc said, quoted by Romanian news agency Mediafax.. The government will continue to utilise the state guarantees for project in other areas, including for the "First House", project.

EIB vice-president said that the loan granted to Ford would stimulate the Romanian economy and indicated that the contracting procedures were made more difficult by the economic crisis.

According to Mediafax, Romanian Finance minister said he hoped that the EIB procedures will help Ford to reach its maximum production level in 18 months, namely 250,000 units per year at the plant in Craiova.

Ford started producing the utility vehicle Transit Connect on September 8, in Craiova, and the first batch of cars arrived in November at the Romanian dealers. The following batches have started to be exported in countries like Bulgaria and Great Britain.