European Investment Bank chief demands recovery boost

European Investment Bank (EIB) President Werner Hoyer | Olivier Hoslet/EPA

European Investment Bank chief demands recovery boost

President Werner Hoyer called on governments for more resources.



The European Investment Bank said it needs more capital and employees to carry out the European Commission’s multibillion-euro recovery plans to overcome the pandemic’s economic fallout.

EIB President Werner Hoyer called on governments for more resources in a letter dated June 8 — obtained by POLITICO — to the bank’s board, which is made up of senior treasury officials from each EU country.

“What is clear is that mandates of such a dimension will have a significant impact on the Group, in terms of capital requirement, staff resources and our [profit and loss],” the letter said. Finance ministers will discuss the matter after their monthly Ecofin Council today.

Hoyer’s demands could complicate negotiations over the Commission’s €750 billion recovery blueprint, intended to kick start the EU’s economy after governments locked down businesses to contain the outbreak.

The plea for more capital could prove problematic for EU governments. They already have given the Commission sizeable guarantees and will need to provide more so it can raise the recovery cash from financial markets.

The EIB is set to play a vital role in the recovery blueprint. The Commission plans for the lender to help mobilize funds for important European companies that are struggling. The “solvency support instrument” would have a kitty of €31 billion, aiming to unlock €300 billion to keep these companies afloat.

The bank would also handle an upgrade version of the bloc’s investment program, InvestEU. The EIB declined to comment on the letter.

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Bjarke Smith-Meyer 

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