EIB agrees to release 750 mln euros in loans

Greece and the European Investment Bank agreed on the immediate disbursement of 750 million euros ($968 million) in loans to small and medium-sized enterprises and for transport, energy and education projects.

The businesses, known as SMEs, will absorb about 440 million euros of the loans, according to a statement from the Athens-based Finance Ministry on Thursday.

The deal ?brings real money into the economy at a time when the lack of liquidity is causing problems that are suffocating the market,? Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras said in the statement.

Greece and the EIB, the European Union?s finance arm, said July 21 that the lender would disburse 1.44 billion euros in loans to Greek SMEs by the end of 2015 via the country?s banks.

With Thursday?s agreement ?we signal to the Greek and European peoples that the EIB is here to stay and that we will increase our activities in Greece,? EIB President Werner Hoyer told reporters in Athens.


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