WBIF 2nd Strategic and 3rd Operational Board Meetings
On 21 and 22 June, the Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF) held its 2nd Strategic Board and 3rd Operational Board Meetings in Rome, hosted by the Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance. The Boards were attended by representatives from 27 EU Member States, the European Parliament, Norway, WBIF partner financial institutions (EIB and EIF, EBRD, CEB, the World Bank and IFC, KfW, AFD), Western Balkan partners, the Energy Community Secretariat and the Permanent Secretariat of the Transport Community. The OECD and IMF, special guests at the meetings, presented, respectively, main findings of the Western Balkans SMEs Index and sketched the region economic outlook.
The Strategic Board was co-chaired by Katarína Mathernová, Deputy Director-General DG NEAR, European Commission and Francesca Utili, Director-General of the Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance. At the Board, the European Commission presented the state-of-play of the implementation on the Economic and Investment Plan for the region through WBIF, underlining the key role of this financial vehicle to make the region more resilient to successive shocks and crisis. A session of the Board was dedicated to the EU and beneficiary partners’ energy crisis response and to the role of WBIF in accelerating the region green transition and energy security.
The WBIF Operational Board members expressed a positive opinion on a total of 12 projects for a total of €60 million IPA grants, including eight technical assistance feasibility studies on public sector projects, for €13.5 million EU grant, and four private sector development projects for €47 million EU grant. The Board expressed a positive opinion to the launch of Technical Assistance round 28 and on two private sector development projects in reserve list. The Transport Community Secretariat updated on recent advances of the Safe and Sustainable Transport Programme.
A very special mention of gratitude goes to the representatives of the Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance who hosted and co-chaired the two-day meetings.
WBIF Flagship projects, June 2022 © WBIF
Photo gallery from the meetings here ©MarcoDelPozzo
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