Greece: EUR 11 million EIB backing for secure travel documents production
31 January 2019
New investment to extend production capacity for state-of-the-art identity documents
55 new skilled jobs expected to be created at world class facility
Demonstrates EIB support for foreign direct investment in Greece
Printing of secure identity documents in Greece will be expanded following agreement of a new EUR 11 million 10 year loan with the European Investment Bank by Veridos Matsoukis S.A., a leading printer of secure documents.
The EIB financing will support more than EUR 23 million of new investment at Veridos Matsoukis’ Athens site dedicated to increase production capacity for passports, identity cards and other official documents for governments using latest security features, crucial for reducing identity fraud.
The first ever EIB support for Veridos Matsoukis was formally signed in Athens earlier today by Efthimios Matsoukis, Managing Director of Veridos Matsoukis and Peter Jacobs, Head of the European Investment Bank Investment Team for Greece.
“Veridos Matsoukis is a leading printer of identification and secure documents. The new EIB financing will enable to expand, state-of-the-art production capacity in Greece to manufacture the most secure passports and identity cards for countries around the world. Access to long-term finance will also allow us to create new jobs in Athens” said Efthimios Matsoukis, Managing Director of Veridos Matsoukis.
Hans Wolfgang Kunz, CEO of Veridos GmbH, Veridos Matsoukis’ majority shareholder, continues: “We have been growing strongly in the past as we have continuously expanded our customer base. As a consequence, we have decided to increase the capacity for the production of highly secure polycarbonate ID cards and data pages for passports at Veridos Matsoukis in Athens. This allows us to continue the success story of this state-of-the-art ID manufacturing site which is known for highest quality by governments around the world.”
“The European Investment Bank is pleased to support EUR 23 million of transformational new investment by a world class company here in Athens through the EUR 11 million loan agreed today. Veridos Matsoukis, together with Veridos GmbH, provide secure identity documents for customers worldwide and investment at their Athens facility will build on the companies’ international strengths. Over the last two years the EIB’s dedicated Investment Team for Greece has strengthened cooperation with Greek business and public sector partners. This has enabled EIB financial support and technical expertise to benefit investment in new sectors and direct financing agreed with a range of first time clients, such as Veridos Matsoukis. “We look forward to further expanding our support to unlock investment by other leading companies with operations in this country and working with international partners wishing to expand activity in Greece”, said Peter Jacobs, Head of EIB’s Investment Team for Greece.
The signing of the loan agreement took place on 31.01.2019 at a special ceremony in a central hotel in Athens.
In his address at the event, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy and Development Mr. Yiannis Dragasakis noted:” The European Investment Bank’s financing of one more company that is developing its production activity in Greece, having a strong outward-looking orientation is another practical vote of confidence for the country and its prospects.
With the National Development Strategy as a compass, Greece is going through a new phase, facing the future with confidence and a renewed potential. The priority of the new era is the emphasis on quality at all levels - the modernization of institutions, the attraction of investments, the exploitation of human capital, the upgrading of products.
Collaborations with European and international entities to support, specifically, business plans that underpin the structural transformation of the economy contribute to the transition to a new sustainable development production model, with the aim of creating new quality jobs and reducing the inequalities.”
Creation of new jobs and extended capacity
More than 50 new skilled jobs are expected to be created at the plant that already produces identity documents, stamps, transport tickets and tachograph documents. With the extended capacity, Veridos Matsoukis takes into account the increased global need for secure identification. According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) passenger numbers could double to 8.2 billion in 2037. Governments need for electronic travel documents for convenient and secure border crossing flow will rise accordingly.
Demonstrating EIB support for international investment in Greece
Veridos Matsoukis’ new loan reflects support for highly valued foreign direct investment in Greece from the European Investment Bank.
Last year the European Investment Bank provided more than EUR 2.1 billion for new business, transport, energy and telecommunications investment across Greece. In recent months the EIB has provided new direct financing for private sector investment by SYSTEMS SUNLIGHT in Thrace and ELVALHALCOR Hellenic Copper and Aluminium Industry SA.
Speaking at the Delphi Economic Forum earlier today Andrew McDowell, EIB Vice President responsible for lending operations in Greece, announced that in 2018 new financing by the EIB Group in Greece totalled EUR 1.9 billion, including EUR 1.57 billion by the EIB and EUR 328 million of new commitments by the European Investment Fund.
The EIB today agreed to continue support for new priority investment across Greece intended to enhance energy efficiency and tackle climate change, improve small business competitiveness, accelerate research and innovation, and support health, education, culture and urban regeneration initiatives across Greece. The EUR 18.6 billion investment programme under the Partnership Agreement 2014-2020 has been successfully supporting small and medium sized priority schemes across Greece since 2014 and ensuring that high-impact projects essential for sustainable development and economic recovery are not delayed.
EIB President Werner Hoyer today in Athens announced the newly established Investment Team for Greece, to strengthen the EU Bank’s activities and demonstrate its strong commitment to the country’s economic recovery.