EIB has been a ‘cornerstone of support for Cyprus’ (updated)

EIB has been a ‘cornerstone of support for Cyprus’ (updated)

The official inauguration of the European Investment Bank’s (EIB) new offices in Cyprus is set to take place this autumn, with EIB President Nadia Calvino scheduled to attend, Finance Minister Makis Keravnos announced on Wednesday following a Cabinet meeting.

Keravnos revealed that the decision was finalised after a recent meeting with President Calvino in Luxembourg, leading to an immediate agreement to establish the Bank’s presence on the island.

Moreover, he explained that to speed up the process, EIB officials will be temporarily accommodated in the Ministry of Finance until they can move into a permanent office.

“This decision is very important because the experts and the executives will be present here and will have a direct understanding of the needs of our economy and our society, but we will also use their expertise for various issues and projects that we are promoting as a government,” Keravnos explained.

Furthermore, Keravnos noted that the specifics regarding the executives are expected to be finalised in the coming days, and the office space at the Ministry is prepared and awaiting their arrival.

Responding to inquiries about staffing, Keravnos mentioned that while the EIB will have its staff on the island, the decision to hire local employees from Cyprus would be at the discretion of the Bank.

“It is up to them how they staff the offices,” he said.

President Calvino shared her enthusiasm about the forthcoming opening. “We are keenly anticipating the launch of our office in Nicosia later this year, which promises to bolster our collaboration with local authorities and fortify our relationships within the business community across the island”, she said.

She further highlighted the broader implications of the EIB’s mission by saying that “our investments are inherently designed to foster transformative changes across EU economies, enhancing living standards. We are committed to this objective in Cyprus as much as anywhere else in the Union.”

The EIB has recently channelled substantial funds into Cyprus, including a €100 million investment aimed at upgrading wastewater facilities in Nicosia, Limassol, and Larnaca. Additionally, it has played a crucial role in supporting Cyprus’s first state-backed venture capital fund through the EIF.

Cyprus stands as one of the primary beneficiaries of EIB financing, relative to its economic size, with over €5.5 billion funnelled into 82 significant projects since 1981, encompassing major infrastructure and educational advancements. In 2023 alone, new agreements worth €257 million were signed between the EIB and Cyprus.

The soon-to-be-launched Nicosia office will join the EIB’s extensive network of external offices across the EU, designed to facilitate enhanced cooperation with local stakeholders, businesses, and public sector entities, thereby propelling investment and advisory services.

Keravnos emphasised the strategic significance of the move, stating, “The presence of an EIB office on Cypriot soil is a game-changer. It enables direct engagement with EIB staff who will lend their expertise in project planning and execution, significantly benefiting our economy.”

Building on this sentiment, EIB Vice-President Kyriakos Kakouris said that “for decades, the EIB has been a cornerstone of support for Cyprus, fostering sustained growth, innovation, and competitiveness across all sectors.”

“I am thrilled to witness the expansion of our local presence, which underscores our steadfast commitment to stimulating the Cypriot economy in the forthcoming years”, he concluded.

Meanwhile, on Monday, a finance ministry announcement highlighted the strategic advantages of the EIB’s local office.

“The opening of an EIB local office will bring significant benefits to Cyprus since it will provide the opportunity for the bank to respond promptly to the needs of the Cypriot economy,” the ministry said.

“Furthermore, with the operation of an EIB office in Cyprus, the various state and private entities will benefit by utilising the expertise of the bank’s staff and the technical support they can offer them during the evaluation and execution of the various projects,” it added.

It should be noted that the EIB maintains a broad presence globally with headquarters in Luxembourg and operates local offices across a total of 55 countries, including 23 EU Member States and 32 third countries.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *