>@Marco Santarelli/EIB
  • President Hoyer and VP Scannapieco met the President of the Italian Republic Sergio Mattarella, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and Minister of Economy and Finance Roberto Gualtieri
  • The Italian Government and the EIB signed a Memorandum of Understanding to enhance cooperation on investments in the country
  • In 2019 Italy was the main recipient of EIB Group financing. In the last ten years the Group invested EUR 100 bn in Italy, supporting a total 280 bn of investments

A top-level European Investment Bank Group delegation, led by EIB President Werner Hoyer and EIB Vice-President Dario Scannapieco, is in Rome today for talks with the highest Italian institutional representatives. The discussions are intended to further strengthen and broaden the scope of EIB Group activities in Italy.

President Hoyer and Vice-President Scannapieco met with the President of the Italian Republic Sergio Mattarella, the Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and the Italian Minister of Economy and Finance Roberto Gualtieri.

During the visit, the EU bank and the Italian Government signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The MoU aims at a strong collaboration between the EIB Group and InvestItalia, the new Italian Government task force to boost investments, both public and private. Based on its expertise, the EIB Group will support the Italian government in planning and programming infrastructure plans, in the creation of platforms to support the economy, and by offering technical assistance in the economic evaluation of projects and the definition of spending plans.

EIB President Werner Hoyer said: “Italy is a key member of the EU Bank. Europe continues to endure an investment gap, and initiatives like Investitalia are crucially important because they provide the framework and tools we need to make sure public and private investments increase not only in volume but also in quality, going where they are most needed. This strategic approach helps optimise cooperation with the EIB Group and ensures that Italy’s relationship with the EU Bank, which has deep roots, also has a bright future.”

EIB Vice-President Dario Scannapieco said: “The relation between the EIB and Italy goes back to the very beginning of the institution: the EIB was born on a specific Italian request at the Messina Conference in 1955 and Italian was the first project financed by the Bank. The meeting of our delegation with the highest national authorities and the signature of the MoU with the Government are a concrete testimony of what the EIB has done and can do for the development of the country. (“Il legame tra la BEI e l’Italia affonda le proprie radici agli albori della nostra istituzione: la BEI è nata su specifica richiesta italiana alla Conferenza di Messina del 1955 e italiano è stato il primo progetto finanziato. L’incontro tra la nostra delegazione e le più alte cariche dello Stato e la firma del Protocollo d’Intesa con il Governo sono una testimonianza concreta di quello che la BEI ha fatto e può continuare a fare per lo sviluppo del Paese”).

The original contract No. 1 of the EIB has been exhibited during the signature ceremony. It was signed in Italy in 1959 and it was related to the financing of three projects in the South of Italy in the energy sector, for a total amount of 12.5 billion Italian liras (corresponding to ca. 170 million euro at today’s value). The contract is preserved in the Historical Archives of the European Union at the European University Institute in Fiesole (Florence).

Italy was the main partner of EIB Group activity in 2019, with 17.3% of total financing in Europe: EIB Group finance amounted to EUR 11bn (0.6% Italian GDP) out of which EUR 9.7bn of EIB loans and EUR 1.4bn of European investment fund (EIF) equity and guarantees. Total investments supported reached EUR 34bn (1.9% Italian GDP); 44,595 SMEs and 734,652 jobs has been supported.

In the last decade the EIB Group lent to Italy more than EUR 100bn supporting EUR 277bn investments, with around 309`000 SMEs and 6.5m jobs supported. Regarding the Investment Plan for Europe (the Juncker Plan), Italy is the second EFSI beneficiary in the EU with EUR 11.3bn endowed by the EIB Group (15.2% of the total), capable of mobilising EUR 69.7bn of investments.