ATHENS (XINHUA) – The European Investment Bank (EIB) signed two agreements on Wednesday totalling EUR730 million (USD871 million), aimed at strengthening business financing and upgrading Greece’s electricity network.
Under the first deal the EIB will provide EUR400 million in support for the Hellenic Development Bank to facilitate access to funding to more small and medium-sized businesses and larger enterprises in Greece to deal with the impact of the pandemic.
The EUR400 million from the loan agreement will grow up to three times through cooperation with the banking system to finance the real economy and Greek entrepreneurship, said President and chief executive of the Hellenic Development Bank Athina Chatzipetrou, in a statement.
Under the second agreement, Greece’s largest power utility – the Public Power Corporation SA – will receive a total of EUR330 million under a 20-year loan to help upgrade electricity distribution lines and roll-out smart meters to increase the use of renewable energy, the EIB announced in a press release.
Last year, the EIB allocated EUR2.8 billion for private and public investment across the country.
“We feel very confident that we will return to a very robust growth path. We are very happy that you will be faithful partners in this path towards financing our new growth model,” Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said while welcoming EIB President Werner Hoyer, according to Greek national broadcaster ERT.
The EIB will play a significant part in the implementation of Greece’s national Recovery and Resilience Plan approved by the European Commission last week, the Greek leader noted.