US pledges up to €1bn for EU's eastern Three Seas region

US pledges up to €1bn for EU's eastern Three Seas region
By Linas Jegelevicius in Vilnius October 21, 2020

Washington has given a conditional pledge to support infrastructure projects with up to €1bn in the European countries involved in the Three Seas Initiative. 

Washington has encouraged the 12 participating EU states, predominantly Central and Eastern European nations who had previously been behind the Iron Curtain, to carry out the initiative’s aim to modernise transport and energy infrastructures and requirements, yet it also warned of China’s influence in the region with investments and loans.

The pledge was made at a virtual summit of the Baltic States, the US and nine other countries involved in the initiative in Tallinn. 

The event was held on October 19, with Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid chairing it virtually from her office in the Estonian capital.

US undersecretary for economic growth, energy and the environment Keith Krach announced the US pledge of 30% of the 12 Three Seas nations’ contributions to the scheme combined, up to a maximum of €1bn.

With the combined funds in the cooperation format currently being €900mn, the US has stated it would put in a guaranteed €300mn, rising to €1bn if the 12 Three Seas nations between them stump up €3.4bn.