On 9 July 2020, the European Parliament has adopted two resolutions on the European Investment Bank’s annual activities:
The EIB’s crucial role as the Bank of the EU
The report from the Committee on Budgets highlights the importance of the activities of the EIB in 2018, as the Bank of the European Union. Specifically, it welcomes the EIB’s role within the context of the EU’s COVID-19 response, in particular the support provided to Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs). In addition, it underlines the crucial role the EIB will have to play in putting into practice the European Green Deal and welcomes the EIB’s plans to align its activities fully with global climate action objectives
The report contains a number of specific recommendations for further improvements in the area of transparency, accountability and anti-fraud safeguards as well as regarding environmental and social standards at project level. It also asks to further strengthen relations between the EIB and the European Parliament by concluding an inter-institutional agreement.
The result of the vote for the report was: 527 in favour, 73 against, 91 abstentions.
Recommendations to improve our control of financial activities
The report on the control of EIB´s financial activities in 2018 picks up on issues related to governance, accountability and transparency. It makes a number of specific recommendations, such as:
- reviewing the Code of Conduct of the Management Committee and the Board of Directors
- strengthening internal control frameworks to prevent tax avoidance, money-laundering, fraud and corruption
- increasing transparency of governing bodies and Bank-financed projects
- widening the scrutiny of the EP and the Court of Auditors on EIB operations
The report notes that EIB operations evolved and became more diversified due to the growth of activities under the EFSI. Members also called for the EIB to take a leading role in the development of a climate neutral economy on a national level.
The result of the vote for the report was: 531 in favour, 80 against and 80 abstentions.
EIB President Werner Hoyer commented on the adoption of the two reports: “We welcome these reports from the European Parliament and I would like to thank the rapporteurs, David Cormand and Bas Eickhout, for their excellent and constructive work. We take the recommendations of the European Parliament very seriously and we are committed to further improving the impact of our lending and our internal control frameworks. There is no room for complacency in that regard, especially in these difficult times when maximising the impact of scarce resources is an imperative. We are committed to mitigating the economic fallout caused by the COVID-19 pandemic both inside and outside the Union. At the same time, we remain steadfast in delivering the most ambitious climate agenda of all International Financing Institutions. Our priority now is to ensure a sustainable recovery and a better future for our Member States and160 countries of operation around the world. The support from the European Parliament is essential for us to deliver on these urgent objectives and I am looking forward to continuing our good relationship in the future."