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The European Investment Bank (EIB) is providing up to EUR 815 million for motorways, the Thessaloniki metro and an improved electricity transmission network in Greece.

In the presence of EIB President Werner Hoyer, five finance agreements were signed today in Athens in a public ceremony by the EIB Vice-President responsible for Greece, Mihai Tanasescu, the Minister of Finance Gikas Hardouvelis, the Minister of Infrastructure, Transport and Networks, Michalis Chrysohoidis, the Chairman and Managing Director of Attiko Metro Christos Tsitouras, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Greek Public Power Corporation S.A. Arthouros Zervos, and the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Greek Independent Power Transmission Operator (IPTO) Yiannis Yiarentis. The ceremony was attended also by Minister of Environment, Energy & Climate Change Yannis Maniatis.

On this occasion, EIB President Werner Hoyer stated: “With this strong shot we continue our support for growth and jobs in Greece. We concentrate on key sectors and help the Greek State to proceed with the construction of the country’s major motorways and the Thessaloniki metro to improve the citizens’ living and economic conditions. We also contribute to realise the electricity interconnection of the Cyclades islands, a long awaited project in Greece. This investment boosts tourism, by putting an end to the blackout risks of the past. All five projects will create jobs during construction and after, through commissioning, and will have further positive spillover effects in the regional and national environment, economy and living conditions”.

EUR 300 million to the Hellenic Republic for the Greek motorway programme

The EIB loan will be supporting the State’s financial commitments to the country’s main transport corridor (Patras-Athens-Thessaloniki), which is also a trans-European priority transport investment. The loan will finance the construction of 239 km of new motorways and smaller upgrades on 434 km of existing motorways located along this main axis. This is the second and last tranche of the EIB facility of a total of EUR 650 million for the resumption of construction works on Greek motorways which, considering their strong impact on employment and GDP growth, play a special role in revitalising the Greek economy.

EUR 200 million in further support of the Thessaloniki metro

The Thessaloniki Metro project has been the focus of the Greek State’s strategy for providing an efficient and effective public transport system in metropolitan Thessaloniki, in parallel with the ongoing extensions of the Athens metro network. As such, it has been supported by the Greek State, the European Union through EU grants and the EIB. This essential public service project represents one of the most important areas of EIB value-added activity, as the EU Bank’s ability to provide long-term financing perfectly matches the long-term nature and requirements of the infrastructure provided. The EIB is already partially financing the Thessaloniki metro baseline, with previous loans totaling EUR 650 million, and the finance agreement signed today provides additional support for the network’s extension to the area of Kalamaria.

EUR 180 million for improved electricity network

The signature of EUR 180 million loan is the second and final tranche of a EUR 415 million facility to the Greek Public Power Corporation S.A. (PPC), for renovating and reinforcing the electricity distribution network, as well as extending it to enable some 186 000 new connections throughout peninsular and insular Greece.

The investment programme will benefit consumers and suppliers by improving the electricity distribution infrastructure and increasing the effectiveness of electricity supply in meeting demand.

The promoter of the project is the Hellenic Electricity Distribution Network Operator S.A. (HEDNO), a 100% subsidiary of PPC created in 2012.  

EUR 135 million for improved electricity transmission and interconnection of Cyclades

The funding to the Greek Independent Power Transmission Operator (IPTO or ADMIE) consists of two loans aiming at improved electricity transmission and the interconnection of the Cyclades islands to the mainland network.

The signature of EUR 70 million is the first tranche of a EUR 140 million facility to support the company’s current on-going power transmission investment programme. This includes the construction of the Megalopoli Extra High Voltage Station, the interconnection of Nea Makri (Attica mainland) to Polypotamos (island of Evia), and a cluster of smaller transmission schemes.  The loan is expected to support the integration of new generation resources into the grid, including renewable energy, to extend transmission capacity and contribute to improving the reliability of supply.

The signature of EUR 65 million is the first tranche of a EUR 130 million facility to support the connection of the main Cycladic islands Syros, Tinos, Mykonos and Paros with the mainland interconnected system of Greece. The interconnection will be effected through a subsea cable grid operated at 150 kV. The project will substitute the local generation run on fuel oil with energy produced by far cheaper and less polluting stations operated in the mainland system. It will also support the development of additional wind and solar generation capacity that on the islands, which in the currently isolated configuration is restricted for technical reasons.