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The regional representation of the European Investment Bank in the Caribbean will move to the Dominican Republic. The host country agreement was signed in Brussels today by Ambassador Alejandro Gonzalez Pons on behalf of the Government of the Dominican Republic and Pim van Ballekom, European Investment Bank Vice President responsible for lending in the Caribbean. The new office will be located with the European Union Delegation in Santo Domingo, providing better access to the Caribbean and is expected to open later this year.

“The European Investment Bank has a strong commitment to the Caribbean and supporting economic growth and job creation across the region. We greatly appreciate the offer of hospitality from the Dominican Republic demonstrated by the new host country agreement signed today and look forward to increasing engagement from a more strategic location in the Caribbean.” said Pim van Ballekom, European Investment Bank Vice President responsible for lending in the Caribbean.

"The government and people of the Dominican Republic look forward to welcoming the European Investment Bank regional representation in the Caribbean to its new headquarters in Santo Domingo. The EIB is a key long-term partner for investment in the Dominican Republic, with a number of significant recent engagements to support investment in energy and small companies specializing in financial services within the country and across the Caribbean, "said Mr. Alejandro González Pons, Ambassador of the Dominican Republic.

“The European Union Representation to the Dominican Republic looks forward to welcoming European Investment Bank colleagues to Santo Domingo and working together to support investment in the region.” said Irene Horejs, EU Ambassador to the Dominican Republic.

The European External Action Service, a number of Caribbean states and the Secretary General of the Group of African, Caribbean and Pacific states were also represented at the signature ceremony hosted by the Embassy of the Dominican Republic in Brussels.

Europe’s long-term lending institution and the world’s largest supranational financial institution has had a regional office in Fort de France, Martinique since 2007. The EIB has supported development and economic activity in the Caribbean with loans and equity investment worth EUR 1.4 billion since starting operations in the region. The new office is expected to be opened following parliamentary approval of the host country agreement.

Since 1992, when the first operation was signed, the European Investment Bank has provided EUR 294 million to support long-term investment projects in the Dominican Republic, a key country of operation for the EIB in the Caribbean. This includes support for the BTA Toll Road, upgrading of the ETED power transmission lines and a number of operations with microfinance institutions, such as ADEMI, ADOPEM and FONDESA.

The EIB’s lending activity in the Caribbean builds on the region’s strengths by financing projects that support the diversification of economies, promote economic growth and increase employment. The region is gradually moving away from traditional industries, which are dependent on preferential access to EU markets.