The European Investment Bank (EIB) is lending EUR 50 million(1) to Latvia's telecommunications company SIA Lattelekom for the digitalisation and expansion of the country's fixed line telecommunications network. Investments will help install new lines over a three-year period and will also improve links to the digital networks of the neighbouring countries and the European Union which Latvia is expected to join.

The EIB is the European Union's financing arm and has provided nearly EUR 200 million for projects in Latvia since 1994. EIB loans helped upgrade the water and waste water networks in Riga, several hydro-power stations on the river Daugava, the port of Ventspils, the main East-west railway line, as well as environmental and other municipal infrastructure in the country. A number of smaller schemes were also financed through EIB global loans (credit lines) to banks established in Latvia.

Since 1990, the EIB has lent over EUR 10.9 billion to projects in twelve Central European countries: Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Romania, Bulgaria, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Albania.

(1) EUR 1 = LVL 0.588050, GBP 0.621700