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Source: European Investment Bank

  • Alpha Bank, Eurobank, NBG and Piraeus Bank support EUR 650 million infrastructure initiative
  • Infrastructure Funds of Funds highlighted as a model for priority investment in Greece
  • EIB and Greek banks supported EUR 8 billion private sector investment in last 5 years

The European Investment Bank today confirmed involvement of four systemic Greek banks in a new EUR 650 million infrastructure investment programme. The EIB also outlined plans to build on recent support for EUR 3 billion business investment across Greece in partnership with local banks to increase the impact of private sector financing.

Over the last 5 years the EIB has provided more than EUR 9 billion for new infrastructure and private sector investment across Greece, including EUR 3 billion in partnership with locally active banks.

On the first day of a visit to Athens Andrew McDowell, European Investment Bank Vice President responsible for Greece held discussions with Yannis Tsakiris, Alternate Minister of Development and Investments and the CEO’s of Alpha Bank, Eurobank, National Bank of Greece and Piraeus Bank and to provide an update on EIB financing in Greece.

“Cooperation between the European Investment Bank Group and Greek banks has boosted private sector and business investment across Greece. I welcome confirmation that Alpha Bank, Eurobank, National Bank of Greece and Piraeus Bank will support the exciting new Infrastructure Fund of Funds initiative to identify new high-impact investment projects. Bringing together local understanding of economic priorities and technical and financial experience from across Europe will enable future cooperation between the EIB and Greek banks to have a greater social and economic impact in this country” said Yannis Tsakiris, Deputy Minister of Development and Investments.

“Thousands of companies across Greece have been able to create jobs and expand business activity following investment supported by the European Investment Bank and leading locally active banks. Our close partnership has a proven track record of backing private sector investment, including dedicated financing to support youth employment and female empowerment. I am pleased to confirm that last night agreement was reached to enable future cooperation with Alpha Bank, Eurobank, National Bank of Greece and Piraeus Bank and the Hellenic government to support priority infrastructure investment under a new EUR 650 million initiative. The Infrastructure Fund of Funds scheme provides a model for other countries in Europe to follow and the EIB looks forward to working with Greek banking partners in the years ahead to further strengthen support for transformational investment across Greece” said Andrew McDowell, European Investment Bank Vice President.

EUR 650 million infrastructure scheme launched

Confirmation of the involvement of Alpha Bank, Eurobank, National Bank of Greece and Piraeus Bank will enable EUR 650 million for new sustainable investment across Greece. The Infrastructure Fund of Funds will combine national and European Commission resources (ESIF) and accelerate clean energy investment, including energy efficiency and renewable energy and sustainable urban development projects.

Greek Infrastructure Fund of Funds a model for Europe

The new Infrastructure Fund of Funds will tackle investment challenges facing countries across Greece, and the detailed preparations and structure used for the Greek initiative are already being used as the basis for similar schemes in other countries.

New investment to be supported across priority sectors

Sustainable projects being considered for investment under the new Fund of Funds scheme include wind farms, photovoltaic installations, biomass and biogas plants and hydroelectric power stations. New investment to improve energy efficiency in the public and private buildings will also be examined.

Reflecting the importance of supporting socio-economic development the new initiative will unlock high-impact investment in projects including industrial parks, education and cultural facilities, tourism facilities and conference centres.

Ensuring implementation of delayed projects and use of abandoned sites

A key focus of the scheme will be to finance completion of priority infrastructure projects that have been delayed in recent years.

A number of local projects to be financed by the scheme are expected to enable use of previously abandoned facilities by new commercial activity.

Innovative scheme combines European and national financing for Greek investment

The Hellenic Ministry of Development and Investments, established the Infrastructure Fund of Funds with the European Investment Bank to maximise the impact of European Structural and Investment Funds, along with national funds sourced from an EIB loan and proceeds returned from previous urban investments under the JESSICA initiative.

Once fully operational, the new infrastructure scheme will provide financing of EUR 450 million unlocking total investments of at least EUR 650 million for sustainable projects across priority sectors. The European Structural and Investment Funds contribution comes from the Operational Programme Competitiveness, Entrepreneurship and Innovation 2014-2020.

Building on recent support for private sector investment through partner banks

Over the last five years, the EIB has provided Greek banks with more than EUR 3 billion worth of loans for SME lending programmes that have supported more than EUR 8 billion of new business investment.

During the Athens meeting with banking leaders, the EIB Vice President confirmed how the success of dedicated SME financing programmes for youth employment, and the professional empowerment of women recently signed with the 4 systemic banks in Greece was recognised by banks across Europe. Vice President McDowell also used the occasion to outline how the EIB wishes to further strengthen support for high-impact investment in Greece under future initiatives.

Vice President McDowell is currently in Greece for a three day official visit to meet government, banking and business leaders and announce new public and private sector investment.

MIL OSI Europe News