World Bank, EIB, EBRD To Commit over 30 Bln Euro to CSEE Action Plan

World Bank, EIB, EBRD To Commit over 30 Bln Euro to CSEE Action Plan

The European Investment Bank (EIB), the World Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) said they have agreed on a new joint action plan for Central and South Eastern Europe (CSEE) worth over 30 billion euro ($38.8 million).

 The new Joint International Financial Institution (IFI) Action Plan, a direct response to the continuing impact of Eurozone problems on the economies of emerging Europe, aims to rekindle growth in CSEE in the 2013-2014 period by supporting private and public sector initiatives, including infrastructure, corporate investment and the financial sector, the three institutions said on Thursday in a joint press release.

 The EIB Group has agreed to commit a minimum of 20 billion euro, about 6.5 billion euro will be provided by the World Bank Group, while the EBRD expects to invest 4.0 billion euro.

 This new initiative is modelled on the successful 2009-2010 Joint IFI Action Plan that supported Central European economies affected by a liquidity crisis in the financial and corporate sector. Under the 2009-1010 action plan the IFIs initially pledged a contribution over two years of 24.5 billion euro, with results exceeding original targets.

The financial support will mainly consist of loans and will be provided to Albania, Bosnia Herzegovina, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Croatia, Estonia, Macedonia, Hungary, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and Slovenia.

 "On contrasting the previous package, the joint action plan, and this recovery plan now - what is fundamentally different is the type of investments that we are providing," EBRD chief economist Erik Berglof said in a presentation on the EBRD website.

 "At the time it was all about debt, all about lending. Now it is a combination of debt and equity. It is about investments in industry and trying to make these economies more competitive and helping them to come out of this very difficult recovery phase," Berglof explained.

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