OREANDA-NEWS. The President of the European Investment Bank, Werner Hoyer, has called for international humanitarian efforts tackling the refugee crisis to be reinforced by action that helps countries and communities anticipate and respond to crises in a resilient manner. EIB President Werner Hoyer was speaking ahead of the first-ever UN World Humanitarian Summit to be held in Istanbul on 23 - 24 May, gathering world leaders, civil society, multilateral development banks and other key actors in the world of development and humanitarian aid.

EIB President Werner Hoyer said, “It is clear that more medium and long term measures are needed to strengthen the international community’s response to the current crisis of forced displacement, as well as the wider global challenge of migration. Short-term humanitarian interventions are urgent but they do not address the causes of forced displacement and the need to build economic resilience in these countries. We have to ensure continuity and equally strengthen basic services and social infrastructure in countries of origin, transit and host countries. 

He added, “As one of the most engaged International Financial Institutions in the affected regions, the European Investment Bank, as the EU bank, is well placed to deliver a concrete response. Alongside other fellow Multilateral Development Banks we plan to strengthen our contribution both in terms of financing and advisory support on the ground. We are currently putting in place a range of new initiatives and expanding the current activities. Only by working together and creating synergies between development finance and humanitarian assistance, we can have a lasting impact.“

The EIB, whose shareholders are the 28 governments of the EU, is the largest international financial institution active in the Mediterranean region, with unparalleled experience of more than three decades investing in both public and private sector projects in the region, from energy, transport, and water supply infrastructure, to support for small business, female entrepreneurship , youth employment and microfinance.

The EIB currently has a total signed exposure in the MENA (Middle East and North Africa), Turkey and the Western Balkans at around EUR 40 billion* (about USD 44 billion). 

At the European Council in June, the EIB will present its Resilience Initiative in response to the refugee crisis in the Southern Mediterranean and the Western Balkan countries as requested by the European Union Heads of State and Governments. This could involve a significant increase of financing and instruments to support key infrastructure projects and mobilise the private sector. 

Expected EIB investment over the next 5 years currently amounts to EUR 17.5bn (USD 19.7bn)for MENA,Turkey and the Western Balkans. The Bank could substantially do more, stepping-up its financing provided the required conditions are in place, notably availability of guarantee and grant support.