CEB holds annual Joint Meeting in Slovak Republic

15 June 2018

BRATISLAVA – The Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) is holding its 53rd annual Joint Meeting in Bratislava today, at the invitation of the Slovak government. The event brings together the members of the Bank’s Governing Board, Administrative Council and senior management. The State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic Lukáš Parízek opened the session.

Joint Meeting CEB 2018In his opening address, State Secretary Parízek said that the CEB had been a constructive and reliable partner since the Slovak Republic joined the Bank 20 years ago, and commended the CEB on promoting economic growth and helping to reduce disparities between regions in the country. “With migration having accentuated the need for coherent and united societies, the role of the CEB is more important than ever,” he stressed.

Snežana Samardžić-Marković, Council of Europe Director General of Democracy, said that inclusive societies guaranteed equal social rights for everyone thereby promoting social cohesion. “Focusing on vulnerable populations contributes to reducing social inequalities,” she stressed, “and that is where the CEB plays a key role, as a specialised financial institution that facilitates social investments.”

Joint Meeting CEB 2018In his statement, Dominique Lamiot, Chair of the CEB’s Governing Board, said that the high number of projects and amounts in loans approved since 2017 demonstrated that the CEB was an important partner to its member states in the area of social investments. “The Bank will continue to play an important role in helping its members to meet the challenges facing them, but it must also be able to rely on their cooperation,” he said.

Miglė Tuskienė, Chair of the CEB’s Administrative Council, outlined some of the recent and ongoing CEB operations aimed at helping its members tackle the challenges facing them. She said that the Bank was employing innovative financial instruments and said: “The CEB has to be agile and quickly adapt its mechanisms and products to a changing environment. This is exactly the way the CEB is operating today.”

Joint Meeting CEB 2018Concluding the series of statements, Governor Wenzel stressed that, in light of current developments in Europe, strengthening social cohesion through investments in the social sector was a necessity. “The Slovak Republic exemplifies how the close cooperation between the CEB and a member country can yield excellent results in terms of supporting development, boosting growth and raising the living standards of entire cities and regions,” he said. 

In the afternoon, the CEB’s 308th Administrtive Council meeting and 220th Governing Board meeting are being held. Eleven projects with a high social impact will be presented to the Administrative Council for approval during its afternoon session. 

On 14 June, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Kažimír and Governor Wenzel held a joint press conference at the Ministry of Finance, where the Governor also gave interviews to the Slovak press. The journalists asked questions about the CEB’s role and activities, recent operations in the Slovak Republic, and the prospect of financing new social projects in the country.  

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 (Aa1 with Moody's, outlook stable, AA+ with Standard & Poor's, outlook positive and AA+ with Fitch 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.

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