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CEB approves ten new loans to support social projects

24 January 2020

PARIS – Today, at its 316th meeting, the Administrative Council of the Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) made a strong start to 2020 by approving ten new loans for projects with a high social content totalling €621 million.

Finland: a €60 million loan to the City of Vantaa to finance investments in social infrastructure, including schools and day care facilities, social services, health facilities, and sports centres. A wide range of age groups are expected to benefit from the investments, including the elderly, young persons and families with children.

France: a €150 million loan to Nantes Métropole Mobility. The planned investments will significantly improve the standard, efficiency and accessibility of the public transport network in the metropolitan area of Nantes. The area’s 650,000 inhabitants as well as external users of the network will greatly benefit from the improvements.

Hungary: a €50 million loan to Eximbank to support eligible investments undertaken by micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) throughout the country. The funds provided by the CEB will contribute to the creation of new permanent and seasonal jobs and the preservation of existing ones through strengthening the competitiveness of exporting MSMEs.

Ireland: a €34 million loan to Cork County Council to finance a programme aimed at promoting regional development across Cork County. The funds will be used for investments in nine town centres which play a key role in employment and access to services, thus benefiting local communities and the region as a whole.

Italy: a €100 million loan to Regione Lazio to finance social investments in health, social care, mobility and protection of the environment. The final beneficiaries include the inhabitants of municipalities spread throughout the region, which also comprises very small municipalities. In addition, a €80 million loan to IREN SpA to finance the expansion and improvement of aqueduct, sewage and water purification facilities in the provinces of Genoa and Parma. The project is expected to have significant benefits for more than one million of people living in these provinces.

Kosovo: a €2 million loan to support micro-enterprises with the partial financing of productive investments through the micro-lender FINCA Kosovo. The funds provided are expected to benefit low-income persons including entrepreneurs, small businesses, agribusinesses, and private households.

Lithuania: a €25 million loan to Kaunas City Municipality to finance municipal infrastructure under the City Development Plan for the period up to 2022, including investments in transport, education, housing and other public infrastructure. The investments will lead to enhanced municipal services for the 290,000 inhabitants of the City of Kaunas and the 560,000 people living in Kaunas region. In addition, a €100 million loan to the government to finance the State Investment Programme, which is aimed at the improvement and modernisation public infrastructure through the construction of new buildings and the renovation or extension of existing facilities in the public sector.

Serbia: a €20 million loan to the government to finance the refurbishment, reconstruction and expansion of cultural institutions in the country. The project will benefit the visitors of these institutions and stimulate cultural and economic activity, strengthen employment, and help to increase tourism.

Set up in 1956, the CEB (Council of Europe Development Bank) has 41 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 (AA+ with Fitch Ratings, outlook positive, AAA with Standard & Poor's, outlook stable and Aa1 with Moody's, 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.