EIB lends EUR 1.7bn to Balkan countries, Serbia biggest beneficiary.

By bne IntelliNews February 26, 2010
The European Investment Bank (EIB) has granted a total of EUR 1.7bn in loans to Western Balkans in 2009, its president Philippe Maystadt said, adding that the lendings aim is encouraging these countries EU integration. The financial assistance is designed to help EU candidate status countries meet accession requirements, and prepare them to become part of the EU, the lender said. The loans approved by EIB are mainly for infrastructure projects. EIB is one of biggest lenders in the region. Serbia is among the biggest beneficiaries of EIB funds, and in 2009 the country has drawn a record EUR 897mn in loans from EIB. A total of EUR 384mn has been granted to Serbia for financing highway construction, while EUR 360mn was disbursed to local SMEs. In addition, the EIB has also approved a loan for the construction of a bypass around Belgrade .


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