EIB pledges billions of euros to Greece in 2020


The European Investment Bank (EIB) will channel billions of euros this year to Greece to assist the recovery of its economy, the lender's president Werner Hoyer told Xinhua here on Friday, reports Xinhua. Last year the EIB committed funds of 2 billion euros (2.2 billion U.S. dollars) to credit lines for various projects in Greece, and the lender is about to sustain its contribution this year.

"We will not go below this level, as Greece has a high level of ambition," Hoyer, who is on a two-day visit in Athens, told Xinhua following a press conference with Greece's Minister of Rural Development and Food Makis Voridis. "In a country like Greece, a lot of transformation has to be done, a lot of old legacy problems have to be resolved, that's our priority," he said.

"Innovation is one of the issues that are pretty close to my heart, so we have the objectives of climate action, innovation, supporting small and medium-sized enterprises and development," he added. The EIB signed on Friday in Athens three funding agreements with local banks and the country's power utility. The fund, totaling 300 million euros, will support Greece's agriculture, agribusiness and decarbonization.

The lender aims to "make agriculture more attractive to younger people" and promote green energy infrastructure projects as "we are the climate bank of the European Union," Hoyer said at the press conference. (1 euro = 1.08 U.S. dollars)