The offices for the European Investment Bank Regional Representation for the Caribbean region were today officially inaugurated in Fort-de-France, Martinique, by Philippe Maystadt, President of the European Investment Bank, in presence of Jean-Michel Debrat, Deputy General Manager of Agence Française de Développement and Philippe de Fontaine Vive, Vice-President of the European Investment Bank.
The EIB Caribbean regional representation is to play a key role in the EIB’s commitment to build closer ties with its customers and expand operations in the Caribbean region, within the framework of the ACP-EU Cotonou Partnership Agreement, and the Investment Facility, the EIB managed risk-bearing instrument for ACP and OCT countries funded from the European Union Member States through the European Development Fund.
Besides helping to develop stronger links with Caribbean government authorities and its business community, as well as multilaterals such as the Caribbean Development Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank and the World Bank group, the regional representation will support the strengthening of synergies with the other actors of European development cooperation in the Caribbean region: the European Commission through its local delegations, and also the Bank’s partners in the European Development Financing Institutions (EDFIs) group, notably the Agence Française de Développement, with whom the EIB’s regional representation now shares its Martinique office accommodation.
The EIB representation in Fort-de-France will add value in terms of operations and flexibility by offering a single point of contact and advice on European Investment Bank financing of projects, for potential investors from the Bahamas in the north through to Trinidad in the south as well as the British, Dutch and French overseas countries and territories.
The Caribbean Regional Representation is the fourth EIB regional representative office for the ACP countries. It intends to increase the effectiveness of EIB activities, in particular in the private sector, and to reinforce its identity and visibility throughout the region. President Maystadt commented: “As with the other regional representative offices in Dakar, Nairobi and Pretoria, EIB’s office in the Caribbean underlines the Bank’s willingness and commitment to reinforce its support to all ACP countries under the Cotonou Agreement. It will be key to ensure the implementation of the Bank’s strategy for the region”.
For further information about the Bank’s activities in the Caribbean region, please contact:
- Mr. Anthony Whitehouse, Head of Representation
1, bd du Général de Gaulle
Fort-de-France – Martinique
Tel: (+596) 596 74 73 10
Note to the Editor:
The EIB, established in 1958 by the Treaty of Rome, finances capital investment projects that further the European Union (EU) policy objectives. It also participates in the implementation of the EU's co-operation policy towards third countries that have co-operation or association agreements with the Union.
Currently, the Bank’s financing in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific (ACP) is carried out under the provisions of the ACP-EU Partnership Agreement, signed in Cotonou in June 2000 for a 20 year period with successive financial protocols defining the aggregate amount of Community aid to the ACP states for each period.The first protocol covers the period 2003-2007 and comprises EUR 13.5 billion contributed by the EU Member States (EUR 11.3 billion grant channelled through the European Commission as well as the EUR 2.03 billion Investment Facility (IF) and a EUR 187 million interest rate subsidy allocation, both managed by the Bank] and up to EUR 1.7 billion from the Bank’s own resources.
The Investment Facility is a revolving facility (loan amortizations will be invested in new operations), aiming at supporting technically, environmentally, financially and economically sound projects in the private or the commercially run public sector. In parallel, a EUR 20 million OCT Investment Facility was set up in accordance with the Council Decision of 27 November 2001 on the association of Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) with the European Community with a similar aim for the 20 OCTs situated in the Caribbean, the Pacific, and the north and south Atlantic Oceans that are eligible for European Community financial assistance. This is supplemented by up to EUR 20 million from the Bank’s own resources.
The second financial protocol under the Cotonou Agreement will become available upon ratification of the revised Cotonou Agreement that was signed in Port Moresby (Papua New Guinea) in June 2006. Contributions by the Member States under the tenth European Development Fund total EUR 22 billion for 2008-2013, of which EUR 20.5 billion is grant aid from the EU Member States and EUR 1.5 billion is managed by the EIB under the Investment Facility for loans and interest subsidies & technical assistance. In addition, up to EUR 2 billion is available in the form of loans from the EIB's own resources.