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CEB and Bucharest Sector 6 agree on a € 21 million loan for investments in energy efficiency, social housing, and services to vulnerable groups

28 December 2020

PARIS – The Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) and Sector 6 of the Municipality of Bucharest agreed on a € 21 million loan to support energy efficiency improvements to residential and public education buildings, the construction of new social housing units, and enhanced social assistance facilities for vulnerable groups. 

The agreement represents a first tranche of a € 47 million loan approved by the Bank in March 2020 and will be disbursed by the end of the year. Overall, CEB financing will contribute to: 

  • Retrofitting more than 100 multi-family residential buildings and thirteen state schools and kindergarten buildings.
  • Construction and retrofitting of eight after-school facilities and kindergartens to ‘nearly-zero-energy buildings’ standards. 
  • Construction of 246 social housing, energy efficient units.
  • Operation of a food bank and a social canteen for vulnerable groups living in Sector 6, such as elderly persons, single mothers with children, ethnic Roma, and unemployed or people with disabilities. 

“I am pleased that we agreed on this first financing tranche from the Council of Europe Development Bank,” said Ciprian Ciucu, Mayor of Bucharest’s Sector 6. “We will make sure the funds will be used efficiently, in support of good quality social infrastructure and services, including for the most vulnerable, while reducing energy poverty and the city’s environmental footprint.”  

CEB Governor, Rolf Wenzel, said: “The CEB is well aware of the challenges faced by local authorities when it comes to securing financing for their social investments, particularly in the context of the current pandemic. We are therefore pleased to support Bucharest’s Sector 6 in their endeavour to address social and environmental challenges and we look forward to strengthening our cooperation in the months to come.”

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[Notes]

[1] Romania joined the CEB in March 1996. To date, the Bank has provided close to € 2 billion in financing for a wide range of social investments, from historical and cultural heritage, social housing, education, and judiciary facilities to support for MSMEs and in response to natural disasters. In addition, Romania is among the ten largest recipients of grant support from the CEB, with about € 20 million mobilised to date from the Bank’s trust accounts (interest rate subsidies, loan guarantees, and grants proper).

[2] The designs for the Near Zero Energy Buildings have been prepared with technical assistance from the EU-funded European Local Energy Assistance (ELENA) facility. This project also benefits from financing provided by the European Investment Bank (EIB).

Set up in 1956, the CEB (Council of Europe Development Bank) has 42 member states. Twenty-two Central, Eastern and South Eastern European countries, forming the Bank's target countries, are listed among the member states. As a major instrument of the policy of solidarity in Europe, the Bank finances social projects by making available resources raised in conditions reflecting the quality of its rating (Aa1 with Moody's, outlook stable, AAA with Standard & Poor's, outlook stable, AA+ with Fitch Ratings, outlook stable and AAA* with Scope Ratings, outlook stable). It thus grants loans to its member states, and to financial institutions and local authorities in its member states for the financing of projects in the social sector, in accordance with its Articles of Agreement.
*unsolicited