Allied Irish Banks (AIB) has allocated the initial EUR100m European Investment Bank (EIB) SME loan fund, as part of its recapitalization commitment to the government for an additional EUR3bn in new or additional SME lending in each of 2010 and 2011.

AIB has now formally applied for a second tranche of funding for SMEs.

Plutarchos Sakellaris, vice president for EIB, responsible for Ireland, said: “The European Investment Bank is pleased to increase funding for Irish SMEs through AIB. This is part of our wider engagement to assist SMEs across Ireland and elsewhere in Europe to continue to access investment finance during economically challenging times.”

John Irwin, head of business credit products at AIB, said: “Over 1,100 AIB SMEs will benefit from this fund and are investing in their businesses. Sectors that have particularly benefited include agriculture, manufacturing and retail.”