Mission and Functions
Its functions are to promote economic activities contributing to growth, the development of the country and improving the distribution of the national wealth. Particularly, those activities of a social, cultural, environmental or innovative significance are awarded special attention.
To achieve these goals, ICO acts in two clearly distinct ways:
1. As a State-Owned Bank: ICO provides loans to fund company investment and liquidity operations inside and outside of Spain, and acts in two ways:
- Second-floor facilities: ICO designs and sets the main characteristics of the different lines of credit, as well as signing the corresponding Collaboration Agreements with the Credit Institutions for them to be sold through their networks. These lines are mainly directed at the self-employed and small and medium-sized companies. ICO determines the amounts of each line of credit, the purpose of the loans, the interest rates and repayment terms, and provides funds to financial institutions. The latter are in charge of analysing operations, deciding the guarantees that must be provided, deciding on the approval of funding and assuming the risks involved.
- Direct funding: this is corporate structured finance for large projects involving productive, public or private investment. It is provided through are loans designed to match the applicant company's needs, with a minimum amount of €10 million and long repayment terms. To apply for these loans companies go to ICO directly, who study, grant and take on the risk of the operations concerned. Funding is granted preferably in collaboration with private or public entities, whether national, international or multilateral.
2. As a State Finance Agency: ICO manages the official funding instruments that the Spanish State provides for encouraging exports and development aid, with the State compensating ICO for any costs these processes may entail.This type also includes ICO funding, on express instructions from the Government, for those affected by natural disasters, environmental disasters and other events of general interest. For these types of operations, ICO does not take on the risk and therefore acts only after public funds have been provided and/or through compensation of interest rate differentials.