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CEB provides €300 million for Italy’s National School Building Plan

29 July 2019

Rome, 29 July 2019 – The Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) is providing €300 million loan for Italy’s National School Building Plan. The funding will contribute to the rehabilitation, including seismic safety upgrades, and construction of primary and secondary schools throughout Italy. Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP) will contract and channel the funding to the Regions.

CDP School Building PlanThe CEB’s contribution to Italy’s National School Building Plan adds to the €1,255 million provided by the European Investment Bank (EIB). The financing agreements for both contributions were signed today in Rome in the presence of the Prime Minister, Giuseppe Conte, between the Minister for Education, University and Research, Marco Bussetti, and, for the CEB, Vice-Governor Carlo Monticelli; for the EIB, Vice-President Dario Scannapieco; and for CDP, the CEO, Fabrizio Palermo.

European and international financial institutions have contributed €2.7 billion to the Italian government's School Building Plan. The funding is intended for general renovation work, safety and security measures, adaptation to seismic safety standards, energy efficiency measures, and the construction of new school buildings. The financing will be provided by CDP to municipalities, provinces and metropolitan cities via the Regions (first-level administrative divisions in Italy), on the basis of priority rankings prepared by the latter and included in the school investment plan for the 2018 to 2020 period.

Repayments and interest expenses will be borne by the State. The Regions and the local authorities will therefore be able to benefit from the financial resources, without impacting on their Internal Stability Pacts. The CEB and EIB financing has been provided at favourable terms and conditions in accordance with the two financing institutions’ mandates and thanks to their excellent credit ratings.

The launch of the School Building Plan was also made possible by the use of advanced IT systems. Real tools of excellence by all European standards, the systems allowed for the complete mapping of school buildings and investment monitoring throughout Italy.

The CEB’s cooperation with the CDP dates back to 1998, with financing previously provided by the CEB for environment, health, and education infrastructure and for investments in micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs). In addition, the Bank has recently approved a €350 million loan in support of reconstruction works for the Regions impacted by recent earthquakes. Working with the CDP, a valuable CEB partner in Italy, allows the Bank to reach out to the areas that are most in need of social investments and, thus, to act effectively and in accordance with its mandate.

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 (AAA with Standard & Poor's, outlook stable, AA+ with Fitch Ratings, 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.

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