During a meeting on Thursday, Prime Minister Jüri Ratas and President of the European Investment Bank (EIB) Werner Hoyer discussed the EIB's investments in Estonia, the activity of the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) and the EIB's role in a changing European Union.
Ratas said that Estonia has benefited greatly from the EIB's activity. Between 2013 and 2017, Estonia received approximately €868 million in loans from the EIB, most of which was money going to projects co-funded by the public sector, the government press office said.
During the past year, EIB has financed the reconstruction work of Tallinn Airport in the sum of €30 million and the research and development work of ultracapacitor manufacturer Skeleton Technologies in the sum of €15 million.
Ratas assured Hoyer that Estonia's aim during the EU presidency is to extend and increase the size of the investment plan, which means channeling more investments towards promoting the economic growth and competitiveness of member states.
EIB is the financial institution of the European Union, the aim of which is to promote the development and integration of the member states. EIB's shareholders are all EU member states. The holding of each member state is determined in proportion with the country's GDP. The capacity of Estonia's shares in the bank is €173 million or 0.071 percent; the bank's total capital amounts to €242.39 billion.
Member states' support provides EIB a maximum credit risk rating, which allows for loaning of big sums under favorable conditions from money markets. The bank also gives favorable loans to projects of public interest which would otherwise not receive money or would have to take out a more expensive loan. EIB does not pursue profits; the interest rates paid from loans cover the bank's own lending expenses with a 0.15 margin, which makes borrowing money from EIB favorable.
Editor: Aili Vahtla