The European Investment Bank (EIB) has signed a subsidised line of credit with Banque Calédonienne d’Investissement (BCI) for an amount of EUR 5m, which will be onlent for projects in the environmental and renewable energy sectors.
BCI will submit allocation requests to the EIB for part-financing of investment loans advanced for environmental and renewable energy projects.
In order to qualify for an EIB loan, potential projects must meet certain eligibility criteria, in particular identification of the environmental benefits of the project, comparison with other alternative investments and details regarding the standard regulations applicable.
This is the third operation concluded with BCI, which has to date allocated EIB funds amounting to EUR 12.8m in support of local SMEs’ investment projects. For almost twenty years, the EIB has maintained a fruitful partnership with BCI but this is the first time that they have together launched an operation aimed exclusively at the environment and renewable energy.
This project is consistent with the objectives of the Investment Facility, i.e. the development and strengthening of the financial sector, and development of the private sector, in particular SMEs and the environmental sector. The project also fits in with the Bank’s goals in relation to financing of renewable energy and with the Commission’s core “blue-green” strategy in the Pacific Islands, focusing on the environment and renewable energy.
This loan to BCI is the first operation signed by the EIB since the opening of its regional office for the Pacific, which was inaugurated on 26 November in Sydney by Mr Jean-Louis Biancarelli, the EIB’s Director General for Operations outside the EU, in the presence of Mr Misa Telefoni Retzlaff, President of the ACP Council of Ministers and Deputy Prime Minister of Samoa, and Mr John Joseph Aquilina, MP for New South Wales, Leader of the House and adviser on EU issues.
NOTE TO EDITORS
Established in 1958 by the Treaty of Rome, the EIB finances capital investment projects that further the core objectives of the European Union (EU). It also participates in the implementation of the EU’s cooperation policy towards third countries that have cooperation or association agreements with the Union.
Since 1963, the EIB has also been an active partner in the development of many countries in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific (ACP). Its operations in those countries form an integral part of the range of financial assistance made available by the EU under the Cotonou Partnership Agreement signed in 2000 between the Union and the ACP countries. They contribute to sustainable economic and social development and help to reduce poverty. Aside from the loans that it advances from its own resources, the EIB manages the Investment Facility (IF), a revolving fund financed by the EU Member States. The IF proposes various risk-sharing financing facilities in support of capital investment projects implemented in most economic sectors. In 2006, EIB financing in the ACP countries amounted to EUR 745m.
In the context of specific financial support for the Overseas Countries and Territories (OCT), the Overseas Association Decision of 27 November 2001, which is a decision similar to the Cotonou Partnership Agreement, provides for the implementation of a EUR 20m Investment Facility to promote commercially viable enterprises, chiefly in the private sector.
Like the Cotonou Investment Facility, the OCT Investment Facility is a revolving fund providing technical, environmental, financial and economic support for sound projects in the private or commercial public sector.