EIB Confirms €900 Million to Greece for Social Cohesion, Sustainable Urban Regeneration and Just Transition Toward Climate Neutrality
- First tranche of 25-year co-financing loan of €600 million to back Greece’s national contribution in the 2021–2027 Partnership Agreement between the EU and Greece
- Total EIB support will reach €1 billion.
- Operations will help Greek authorities roll out priority investments including energy and water management, education and health services
The European Investment Bank (EIB) and the Greek authorities have announced €900 million in new financing agreements that will support priority investments in high-impact, large scale projects across the country, focused on the green and digital transition. The two key agreements will help build a more competitive, innovative, and export-oriented growth model for Greece, and promote urban regeneration in local municipalities
The EU co-financing operation agreed today will enable the smooth financing of programmes implemented under the Greek 2021–2027 Partnership Agreement between the EU and Greece and increase both their economic and social impact. The €600m of financing represents the first tranche of €1bn in EIB support for the Greek national contribution to EU structural fund-backed priority investments across the country. It will facilitate vital projects to be completed or expanded to increase their impact. In addition, €300m in long-term financing via the CDLF will back new investment in high-impact local projects over the coming years under the pioneering Antonis Tritsis Sustainable Urban Investment programme.
Image: Acropolis of Athens. Source: Leonhard Niederwimmer / Pixabay
“Through European Investment Bank’s co-financing, which reaches €1 billion, investments amounting to more than €23 billion will be realized. These are investments that will significantly contribute to our main strategic target; Greece’s transformation to a sustainable economy which achieves better and higher production and exports, attracts more investments and creates more jobs, opportunities and new perspectives,” said Christos Staikouras, Greece’s Minister of Finance and EIB Governor.
“Today’s signing of the new agreement with the European Investment Bank for the co-financing of European structural funds provides yet another strong vote of confidence in the Greek economy’s prospects but also acts as a springboard for entrepreneurship to make a dynamic restart, while providing funding for crucial infrastructure, especially during a period when the economic climate in Greece is improving and our country has become an important destination for investment. At the same time, it reaffirms our strong ties with the European Investment Bank and European Investment Fund, paving the way for even closer cooperation in the future,” said Yannis Tsakiris, Greece’s Deputy Minister of Development & Investments.
“It is with particular satisfaction that we reaffirm and continue the constructive cooperation between the Consignment Deposits and Loans Fund and the European Investment Bank, aimed at investing in regional development, social cohesion, environmental protection and energy conservation. The first stage of our cooperation has already been completed and the Fund has moved quickly to disburse the loans to achieve these goals,” said CDLF Vice-President Christina Giovani.
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“Investment to improve health and education, enhance economic opportunities, boost public services in local municipalities and strengthen climate action is key for Greece, especially in these challenging times. Today’s two agreements highlight once again the excellent cooperation between the Greek authorities and the EIB Group’s Investment Team for Greece, and are a testament to the enduring, strong, positive relationship between the country and the EU Bank,” said Christian Kettel Thomsen, the EIB’s Vice President responsible for lending in Greece.
Unlocking high impact investment across key sectors
Confirmation of this latest EIB financing will accelerate crucial investment in multiple sectors, such as research and innovation, telecommunications, sustainable transport, water, waste management, renewable energy and energy efficiency, health, education, and urban regeneration projects across Greece. Additionally, the financing will support important small to medium enterprises (SMEs) training, lifelong learning and skills development projects, which will increase the economy’s stock of quality human and social capital, reduce shortages of skilled labour and protect vulnerable persons from sliding into long-term unemployment.
Enhancing climate action in Greece
More than 33% of the funds are earmarked for projects that will reduce emissions and help Greece adapt to the impact of climate change thus contributing to global climate goals. This includes projects to cut energy bills and carbon emissions by improving energy efficiency, smart energy distribution and improving water and waste management.
EIB helping to harness local impact of CDLF in Greece’s localities
The CDLF, a financial institution which operates as a Legal Entity of Public Law and is supervised by the Ministry of Finance, is tasked with the registry of consignments and the social and regional development by funding projects of public and social interest. For this purpose, the CDLF mainly grants loans to municipalities and prefectures, participates in development bodies and co-funds projects with the EIB.
The results of the first tranche of €200m in EIB financing signed in 2021 under the Antonis Tritsis Sustainable Urban Investment programme have been exceptional. The CDLF has already presented more than 250 investment projects in sustainable urban infrastructure to the EIB with a total investment cost exceeding €400m. The EIB has helped the CDLF support local schemes to improve water, wastewater and waste management, road safety and climate resilience, flood and earthquake protection, as well as public health measures against COVID-19.
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