>@Blitz Agency/EIB
  • President Hoyer confirms EUR 56 billion EIB Group backing for COVID response since pandemic
  • EUR 24 billion increased EIB support for climate action
  • EIB to enhance impact of engagement and presence outside Europe
  • Finnish Finance Minister Annika Saarikko to be new chair of EIB Board of Governors

European finance ministers today welcomed the European Investment Bank’s rapid response to accelerate health investment and support businesses most impacted by the COVID crisis, scale up climate action and further enhance the impact of development engagement around the world.

At the Annual Meeting of the EIB Board of Governors, taking place in Luxembourg, EIB President Werner Hoyer confirmed details of the EIB Group’s EUR 56 billion response to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 crisis. The EIB approved EUR 24 billion support for climate action over the last year. President Hoyer also briefed ministers on the EIB’s plans to strengthen development finance engagement outside Europe.

“Over the last year, the EIB Group has worked with partners across Europe and around the world to accelerate investment that tackles the most pressing priorities facing society and our planet. The hard work of EIB and EIF staff has ensured that businesses most impacted by COVID-19 continue to invest, unlocked investment essential to deliver on global climate goals and sustainable development, and backed investment in innovation crucial to strengthen competitiveness. The strong backing of Europe’s finance ministers today demonstrates how the EU Bank’s unique technical, environmental and financial expertise is unlocking opportunities, fostering innovation, and improving lives across Europe and around the world,” said Werner Hoyer, President of the European Investment Bank.

During the meeting, Annika Saarikko, Minister of Finance of Finland, was formally confirmed as new Chair of the EIB Board of Governors, replacing Igor Matovič, Minister of Finance and Deputy Prime Minister of the Slovak Republic, following the end of Slovakia’s 12-month term of office.

EIB Group supporting global economic recovery from pandemic

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic the European Investment Bank and European Investment Fund have approved more than EUR 56 billion of targeted support for businesses most impacted by the crisis, public health and delivery of vaccines.

This includes EUR 6.5 billion of new financing to strengthen health and economic resilience outside the European Union, including EUR 600 million for the COVAX initiative that has delivered life-saving vaccines to over 100 countries worldwide.

The EIB and EU member states have approved EUR 12 billion of new support for business financing to be deployed across Europe by local banks under the European Guarantee Fund.

The EIB is also working with national partners to strengthen the impact of new investment backed by the Recovery and Resilience Facility, including sharing technical best-practice and developing new financial initiatives that reflect local needs.

Accelerating climate action and a green recovery

In 2020, the EIB provided EUR 24 billion for climate related investment around the world and adopted an ambitious 5 year Climate Bank Roadmap to support the European Green Deal.

This will leverage EUR 1 trillion of new climate and environmental investment over the next decade and ensure that all EIB financing activities are aligned with the goals and principles of the Paris Climate Agreement.

Increasing the impact of development partnership in Africa

Last year, the EIB provided a record EUR 5 billion of financing for private and public investment across Africa, with 71% targeting fragile and low income countries.

Following the adoption by the Council of conclusions on the European Financial Architecture for Development, the EIB is currently finalising plans to strengthen its development finance work, to better complement that of other European bodies and fulfil its role within Team Europe.

New chair of Board of Governors

The European Investment Bank Board of Governors comprises the 27 European Union finance ministers and was chaired by Igor Matovič, Minister of Finance and Deputy Prime Minister of the Slovak Republic.

For the next 12 months, the Board of Governors will be chaired by Annika Saarikko, Minister of Finance of Finland.

“It is an honour to be appointed new Chair of the EIB Board of Governors. I look forward to working with fellow finance ministers to enable the European Investment Bank’s unique financial strength and technical expertise to strengthen health and business resilience to COVID-19, accelerate climate action and unlock innovation across Europe and around the world,” said Annika Saarikko, Minister of Finance of Finland.

“On behalf of my EIB colleagues, I wish to express my gratitude for the personal engagement of Finance Ministers Igor Matovič and Eduard Heger during the last 12 months and we look forward to working closely with Minister Annika Saarikko over the coming year,” added President Hoyer.

The Luxembourg based European Investment Bank is the world’s largest international public bank and last year the European Investment Bank Group provided EUR 76.8 billion of new financing for investment across Europe and around the world.