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EIB open to back infrastructure projects in Belarus

PM Kobyakov,we consider the European bank as important partner

28 October, 18:20
(ANSA) - ROME - The European Investment Bank (EIB) and the Republic of Belarus endorsed the financing by EIB of key infrastructure projects in Belarus, including the upgrade of some connectivity projects between the country and its EU neighbours. The EIB activities in Belarus were discussed by the EU bank's Vice-President and Member of the Management Committee, Alexander Stubb, and the Belarus Prime Minister, Andrei Kobyakov, during the Belarus-EU Economic Forum in Luxembourg.

The Forum was also attended by European Commissioner Johannes Hahn, a press release reports. The infrastructure projects that the EIB is willing to support include the upgrade of international transport corridors, municipal and environmental infrastructure, including energy water and wastewater, and climate action projects. The EIB is already involved in appraising the upgrade of a highway from Minsk to the Lithuanian border in parallel financing with the World Bank. Other areas of interest include support for the private sector and SMEs, notably through local banks and local industrial groups. EIB Vice-President Alexander Stubb said: ''We believe that by combining forces, the EU, the EIB and other International Financing Institutions active in Belarus can make a difference and provide a boost for economic development in this important country.

Belarus Prime Minister, Andrei Kobyakov, commented: ''This year we have signed the Framework Agreement, which allows the European Investment Bank to carry out activities in the Republic of Belarus and laid down the basis for our partnership''. We consider the EIB as an important and serious partner with significant investment resources, best practices and knowledge'', he pointed out. EIB has gained a more than ten-year experience in the Eastern Partnership region, which include six EU neighbouring countries.

To date, close to EUR 8bn of loans was provided to Eastern Partnership countries for infrastructure, local private sector development and climate action projects. (ANSA).

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