The European Investment Bank (EIB), the European Union's long-term financing institution, is providing EUR 150 million (1) to the Turkish Government to support priority rehabilitation and reconstruction works in the regions devastated by the earthquake of August 1999 and its aftershocks in Turkey. The loan, signed by EIB Vice President Mr Ewald Nowotny in Ankara today, is the second tranche of a larger facility of up to EUR 450 million for emergency reconstruction works. A first loan EUR 150 million under this facility was signed in February 2000.

The EIB is participating in funding the investment project, in cooperation with other multilateral financing institutions, including World Bank and Council of Europe Development Bank, in support of the Turkish Government's EUR 1.5 billion reconstruction programme.

The EIB's facility is part of a larger EIB framework, the "Turkish Earthquake Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Assistance" (TERRA), approved by the EIB for the provinces hit most by the earth-quake. The TERRA framework provides for a total of EUR 600 million in the form of loans to be engaged over a three-year period. The EIB's two first tranches totalling EUR 300 million contribute mainly to restoring housing and all essential economic and social infrastructure.

The implementation of the works will be coordinated by the Project Implementation Unit (PIU), established within the Prime Minister's Office. 

The EIB is a lead player in implementing the European Union's "Euro-Mediterranean Partnership" and its priority objectives. To this end, the Bank has been entrusted with a mandate of EUR 6.4 billion for the period 2000-2006, for funding projects in the 12 non-EU Mediterranean countries which have signed cooperation and/or association agreements with the EU.Turkey is eligible to apply for EIB financing from this facility. Since 1995, the EIB has contributed more than EUR 700 million towards projects of key importance for the Turkish economy. The EIB has also promoted SMEs through global loans to local commercial banks.

(1) Conversion rates: EUR 1 = 0.613200 GBP, 0.890600 USD,582.224 TRL