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Oct 18: New Lending Product to Improve...

The New Lending Program to Improve Environment and Create Jobs

Vancouver, October 18, 2001 - A new lending program to help organizations improve both the environment and the economy is now underway in a partnership between Vancity Credit Union, Vancity Capital Corporation, Ecotrust Canada and Western Economic Diversification Canada.

The goal of the BC-wide Conservation Finance program is to create jobs and help small and medium-sized organizations make a significant environmental impact by providing them with the necessary financing for growth and expansion. It is one of the only financing of its kind available in the market.

Conservation financing is available to small and medium-sized businesses and community organizations that deliver products or services with measurable environmental benefits or implement significant environmental improvements. To qualify, a business must have been in operation for at least six months, have fewer than 250 employees, and less than $12 million in annual revenues. It should be able to demonstrate solid management and a sound business case for financing.

Under the program, loans of up to $500,000 can be used for research, product or market development, increasing production and service capacity, working capital, equipment or other fixed assets, as well as bridge financing for confirmed contracts.

Pollution prevention, eco-systems restoration, energy conservation and the sustainable harvesting of natural resources are examples of the kinds of activities to be financed under this program.

For more information on the Conservation Finance program, please contact Vancity Credit Union at (604) 709-6935, Ecotrust Canada at (604) 682-4141, ext. 27, or Vancity Capital Corporation at (604) 877-7657.

Vancity is Canada's largest credit union, with $7.3 billion in assets, 271,000 members, and 39 branches throughout Greater Vancouver, the Fraser Valley and Victoria. Vancity owns Citizens Bank of Canada, serving members across the country by telephone, ATM, and the Internet. Both Vancity and Citizens Bank are guided by a commitment to corporate social responsibility, and to improve the quality of life in the communities where we live and work.