Tom Hackett has been appointed Director of the Italy Department of the European Investment Bank (EIB), the European Union's long-term lending institution.

The Italy Department, with a staff of 31, opened in 1969 and is responsible for the Bank's lending operations in Italy. Over the years, it contributed considerably to the growth of the EIB as a whole. Lending to Italy currently represents over 17% of the Bank's total outstandings (EUR 155,333,210) and 20% of outstandings within the European Union.

He succeeds Mrs Caroline Reid, who has recently been appointed Director General of the Projects Directorate of the Bank.

Hackett, 53, joined the Capital Markets and Financial Risk Management Department of the EIB in 1981. In December 1993 he was appointed Director of the Department responsible for EIB's lending operations in the United Kingdom, Ireland and the North Sea.

Prior to joining the EIB, Tom Hackett worked for 13 years with Warburgs in the City of London. He holds a degree in Modern Languages from the University of Sussex.