Portugal’s state-owned financial company Instituição Financeira de Desenvolvimento (IFD) has signed a €100 million agreement with the Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) aimed at Portuguese companies.

The contract gives “preference to financing companies with up to 50 employees”, but it is also designed “to help successful companies to modernise their activity”, Henrique Cruz, the IFD’s president, said during the signing ceremony at the ministry of economy in Lisbon.

“For the Council of Europe Development Bank’s credit line, we have identified some special aims, such as contributing to small and medium companies modernising and growing, as well as promoting the creation of small businesses”, he added.

Portugal’s minister of economy Pedro Siza Vieira, stressed that investment was one of the main areas the country needs to improve, along with innovation and human resources qualification.