European Union (EU) member countries have renounced plans to create a Euro-Mediterranean Bank (EMB) and instead decided to raise their contributions to the European Investment Bank (EIB) by an annual two billion euros ($1.8 billion) to support the Southern Mediterranean region, reported Al-Alam Al-Yaum.
Last month, the European Commission expressed backing to the idea of creating an EMB, that would function as a majority-owned subsidiary of the EIB. The EMB was to foster the development of the private sector and help finance infrastructure in the region. According to official sources, the EU planned to allocated €10 billion ($8.6 billion) for the establishment of the bank.
EU members ultimately decided however that raising their investments would be a less grand yet more realistic way of satisfying the region’s needs. The EIB currently provides the region with nine billion euros annually. The EU’s 12 Mediterranean Partners are Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, the Palestinian Authority, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, Cyprus and Malta. Libya currently has observer status at certain meetings. — (menareport.com)
© 2002 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )