Italy is a founding member of the EBRD and an important contributor to the Bank's work.
Italy is among the major contributors to the EBRD technical cooperation (TC) funds and investment cooperation funds with €133 million provided since 1992 (not including Nuclear Safety funding).
Italy and the EBRD: at a glance
€133mn donor funds supporting EBRD operations
8.52% capital share
€20bn Italy-EBRD investments
Italy’s contribution continued supporting operations of the EBRD’s Local Enterprise Facility (LEF) in the SEMED region, Turkey, and the Balkans. Through its contribution to the LEF, Italy is also participating in financing investments under the Enterprise Expansion Fund (ENEF) component of the Western Balkans Enterprise Development and Innovation Facility (WBEDIF).
Italy’s contributions have underpinned the growth of small and medium-sized businesses in the Balkans and of the Southern and eastern Mediterranean (SEMED) region and Turkey. Italy is also participating in financing investments under the Enterprise Expansion Fund (ENEF) component of the Western Balkans Enterprise Development and Innovation Facility. Italy contributed to several multi-donor funds, including the European Western Balkans Joint Fund and the SEMED Multi-Donor Account.
In 2016 Italy provided €1.5 million for the Bank’s Small Business Impact Fund, joined EBRD-Ukraine Stabilisation and Sustainable Growth Multi-Donor Account donors with €0.5 million and contributed €1 million to the SEMED Multi-Donor Account.
The Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance, through the Italian Technical Co-operation Fund established in 1992, supports many grant-funded projects. For example, Italy supports the EBRD’s Investment Climate and Good Governance Initiative, with a focus on improving the investment climate and reenergizing economic transition in the countries of operation, with a particular focus on Albania. Italy also funds the Public Procurement Management International Master programme at the University of Rome Tor Vergata, enabling professionals from the EBRD countries of operation to build important public procurement skills.
Responding to EBRD’s strategic gender initiative, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Italy provided €400,000 in 2014 for SME advisory services programme in Albania under the new Bank’s regional Women in Business programme in Western Balkans.
Finally, the Italian Ministry of the Environment allocated €102,000 to support the development of EBRD municipal environmental infrastructure projects in South-East Europe through the creation of a new officer position over two years.
Italy is the sole contributor to the Central European Initiative Fund. The CEI Fund, which was established in 1992 and has contributions of €43.5 million to date, supports transition countries in the process of EU integration. The Fund supports technical cooperation projects in the areas of transport, sustainable energy and enterprise development. The Fund has also provided assistance through a specific CEI instrument, the Know-How Exchange Programme by financing capacity building projects.
Italy is one of the strongest sources of foreign direct investment in the EBRD’s countries of operations. The value of joint Italy-EBRD investment stood at €20.9 billion as of January 2017. EBRD finance accounted for €11.5 billion of this total and Italian investment accounted for €9.4billion.
Italy-EBRD investment has been strong in Poland with 45 per cent of total joint investments, followed by Turkey with 28 per cent and Bulgaria with 27 per cent. Broken down by sector, 40 per cent of joint Italy-EBRD investment has been in industry, commerce and agribusiness; 39 per cent in energy; 14 per cent in infrastructure; and 7 per cent in financial institutions. Italian investment includes €4.2 billion of commercial co-financing and €0.15 billion of co-financing from official sources, such as export credit agencies.
Italian banks are also involved in the Trade Facilitation Programme (TFP), through which the EBRD guarantees the payment of trade finance instruments issued by banks in the countries where we invest to foreign confirming banks. Through the Programme, the EBRD has financed 1704 export and import transactions of Italian companies totalling €366 million. Of the over 800 foreign confirming banks and bank branches participating in the Programme, 28 are Italian.
In 2016, Italian consultants secured 102 contracts totalling approximately €13.1 million.