The Slovenia Times

EIB Expresses Interest in Transport, Energy Investment


The EU's lending institution pinpointed the Draženci-Gruškovje motorway project in NE Slovenia and energy infrastructure, especially hydro power, as immediate investment priorities.

It said that hydro power projects were interwoven with efforts to bolster flood safety in the country. The listed motorway project is seen in Slovenia as a key transit route for tourists from the north of Europe on their way to the Croatian coast in the summer.

The bank said in presenting its annual plans that its ties with Slovenia are excellent, as "demonstrated by the extent of operation in support of public and private investment".

In addition to the most immediate investment projects, the EIB also left the door open to investment in the railways, a key priority for Slovenia, which is looking to bolster its rail network as part of efforts to make the port of Koper more competitive.

It announced that the EIB will work with the Slovenian government and the state railways company, Slovenske železnice, in assessing plans for the planned new track between Koper and (the railway hub) of Divača.

It highlighted that it had already invested in modernisation of railways infrastructure, including the upgrade of the first Koper-Divača line and reconstruction of a track in central Slovenia hit by last year's ice storm.

"Going forward, EIB will continue to support investments in the railways network necessary to ensure efficient passenger and freight services."

The EIB has provided investments of EUR 4.8bn from 2005 through 2014, including EUR 2bn in the past three years. The latter number represents 5.5% of Slovenia's GDP, which the bank highlighted was the largest share in GDP achieved in this period.

In addition to major projects, the EIB is also active and plans to remain active in providing financing for small and medium-sized business.


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