• The EIB has announced the scaling-up of financial and technical support for climate adaptation and energy efficiency projects in line with the Economic and Investment Plan.
  • The EU bank has provided 156 million since 2020 for the sustainable recovery of the country.
  • To date, the EIB Group has invested 1.1 billion in the economic and social development of North Macedonia.

During the visit of the European Investment Bank (EIB) to Skopje, EIB Vice-President Lilyana Pavlova reaffirmed the EU bank’s commitment to accelerating the decarbonisation and green transition of North Macedonia by supporting the key projects outlined in the Economic and Investment Plan. Bilateral meetings with the Prime Minister Dimitar Kovačevski, Minister of Finance Fatmir Besimi and several other ministers, the Mayor of Skopje and the Head of EU Delegation in North Macedonia helped identify new possibilities for extending cooperation under the new EIB Global branch, which aims to increase support for countries outside the European Union. The EIB highlighted support for the development of modern railway infrastructure, the energy network, and water and wastewater infrastructure to help the country adapt to climate change and protect the environment. Furthermore, the Bank intends to develop new guarantee and risk-sharing instruments for the private sector in collaboration with the European Commission.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the EIB has unlocked €156 million for North Macedonia to enable small and medium-sized enterprises to recover more quickly, and to facilitate the construction of a new gas network essential for stable and secure energy supply. Looking ahead, the EU bank will also help its partners in North Macedonia to increase capacities for project preparation and implementation, which will help deliver high-impact investments for the benefit of the country and its people.

EIB Vice-President Lilyana Pavlova, who is responsible for operations in North Macedonia, said:We are looking forward to accelerating the green, inclusive and sustainable transition of North Macedonia through reinforced cooperation with our local partners. The EIB plans to bring its financial and technical resources even closer to North Macedonia and other Western Balkans countries thanks to our new dedicated branch — EIB Global. Under this new brand, I would like to re-affirm the EIB’s full backing for North Macedonia in achieving their goals and reforms in line with EU policies and the European Commission’s enlargement strategy. As a strong and dedicated partner for North Macedonia, we will work actively to implement projects under the European Union’s Economic and Investment Plan and beyond. In addition to our support for infrastructure projects, we are committed to supporting the digital and green transition of the private sector.”

Prime Minister of North Macedonia Dimitar Kovacevski thanked the EIB for the continuous support it had given to his country in the process of accession to the European Union, and expressed confidence that successful cooperation will continue in the future. Both parties agreed that the implementation of the project for the construction of a gas interconnector between North Macedonia and Greece is of great importance for the diversion of energy resources and security of supply, contributing to socioeconomic growth and integration in the regional energy market and the European Union.

With the financial support of the EIB and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the construction of railway on Corridor 8, section Kriva Palanka - border with Bulgaria will be concluded. Minister of Finance Fatmir Besimi expressed gratitude to the EIB for their support in obtaining an investment grant for the implementation of this project through the Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF).

At the meeting with EIB Vice-President Lilyana Pavlova, Minister of Finance Famir Besimi said: “The implementation of this project is one of the priorities of the government, taking into account that the construction of the third section of rail Corridor 8 is one of the key issues raised during the latest discussions with Bulgaria, and a strategic project on which the Macedonian-Bulgarian Transport Group is currently working actively. Moreover, the government also plans to complete the construction of the western part of the Rail Corridor 8, in particular the Kicevo-border section with Albania. It will soon submit an application to international financial institutions including the EIB to express interest in financing this project.”

As a loyal and long-standing partner to North Macedonia, since the start of our operations in the country the EIB has invested €1.1 billion supporting the development of vital infrastructure and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Background information

About the EIB in North Macedonia:

The EIB has been active in the territory of North Macedonia since its establishment in 1991, providing finance to support key infrastructure projects, local authorities and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The EIB has provided €1.1 billion of financing to SMEs and transport, energy and utility infrastructure projects.

About the EIB in the Balkans:

The EIB is one of the leading international financiers in the Western Balkans.

About the EIB’s climate action:

The European Investment Bank is active in around 160 countries and is the world’s largest multilateral lender for climate action projects. The EIB Group has recently adopted its Climate Bank Roadmap to deliver on its ambitious agenda to support €1 trillion of climate action and environmental sustainability investments in the decade to 2030 and to deliver more than 50% of EIB finance for climate action and environmental sustainability by 2025. Also as part of the Roadmap, all new EIB Group operations will be aligned with the goals and principles of the Paris Agreement from the start of 2021.