EIB’s investments in W. Balkans, Ukraine opportunity for Croatian companies

ZAGREB, 8 April (Hina) – Investments by the European Investment Bank (EIB) in Ukraine and the Western Balkans provide business opportunities for Croatian companies, a conference organized by the Croatian Employers’ Association in cooperation with the EIB and Finance Ministry heard on Monday.

HUP Director-General Irena Weber underlined the “huge potential” of EIB investments in the Western Balkans and Ukraine, calling for increasing their public visibility and pointing to the quality of Croatian companies in the areas of engineering, construction, food production and education.

Presented at the conference were opportunities for Croatian companies and experts applying for public procurement procedures within projects financed by the EIB, with focus on the Western Balkans and Ukraine.

The head of the EIB Group office in Croatia, Sladjana Ćosić, pointed to investments by the EIB and EU in infrastructure, energy industry, schools, hospitals and affordable housing in the Western Balkans and Ukraine.

In the coming period the EIB will focus on the reconstruction and recovery of Ukraine, investments in EU aspirants and in the implementation of the EU’s Global Gateway programme, Ćosić said.

Since the start of the war in Ukraine, the EIB’s total support to the country has reached two billion euros, plus additional funds from the EU’s fund for Ukraine, established in 2023.

Ćosić also underlined the EIB’s leading role in the Western Balkans Investment Framework, a European Commission-led platform aimed at identifying and developing strategic investments in that region. Since 2010 the EIB has secured financing in the amount of more than €10 billion for Western Balkan countries, she said.

Finance Minister Marko Primorac said he would like today’s conference to be not only a platform for the exchange of information but also a catalyst of closer cooperation between the EIB and Croatia and facilitate the participation of Croatian companies in projects to be financed and implemented in the third countries.