The Prime Ministers of Israel and Palestine, Naftali Bennet and Mohammad Shtayyeh highlighted the European Investment Bank’s key contribution to supporting climate action, innovation and business investment in talks with President Hoyer and Vice President Vigliotti this week.

On Sunday, 15 May 2022 more than 120 representatives of Palestinian and European financing institutions, local business partners and international diplomatic partners attended the formal opening of the EIB’s new office for the West Bank and Gaza at a ceremony in Ramallah. The new EIB office, headed by Francesco Totaro, is located within the EU Representation in Jerusalem.

Signatures of EUR 214 million for Palestinian businesses, including EUR 50 million of dedicated Team Europe support for private sector investment in Gaza, marked the largest ever commitment of this type for the sector, through the Palestinian Monetary Authority and Cairo Amman Bank. In addition, a new partnership between the EIB, World Health Organization and Palestinian Ministry of Health to improve primary healthcare and oncology services across the West Bank and Gaza was also announced.

President Hoyer and Vice President Vigliotti outlined the EIB’s unique role backing climate action and business investment across the region through EIB Global, the EIB’s development arm. They also discussed priorities for future engagement with EU and US Ambassadors, the Quartet on the Middle East, the United Nations and influential NGO Ecopeace. The visit also provided an opportunity to discuss ongoing and future EIB Global engagement with Israeli and Palestinian ministers responsible for innovation, energy, climate and finance.

In Tel Aviv the EIB signed EUR 22 million growth financing with Israeli microbiology diagnostic leader Pocared, the first Israeli medtech company to be supported by the Infectious Disease Financing Facility. The new financing will accelerate development of rapid infectious disease testing and enable automated rapid testing to both improve COVID-19 detection and identify respiratory infection.

Over the last week the EIB President, Vice President and EIB financing experts met entrepreneurs and startups in Gaza, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Bethlehem and Ramallah and saw how the EIB is supporting the world’s largest desalination plant in Israel and installation of renewable energy on the rooftops of 450 Palestinian schools.

Vice President Vigliotti visited the site of the planned Gaza Central Desalination plant that has the potential to transform access to drinking water for 2 million people. At the Nablus regional sub-station the Vice President confirmed EIB backing for electricity grid investment to reduce blackout and enable increased use of renewable energy.