A 200 million loan investment is under negotiations, according to Jean-Jacques Soulacroup, the Senior Corporate Banker at the European Investment Bank, who spoke during his meeting with the representatives of Ukrainian and foreign business in the frames of the 2nd International Trade and Industry Conference of Free Trade Area, held in Kyiv on December 1 – 2.
Earlier, European Investment Bank announced the project to allocate 200 million Euros of loan investment for modern urban public transport back in May. Purchase of electric vehicles will improve the frequency and sustainability of public transport in medium-sized Ukrainian cities and will have a positive effect on the economy of those cities. Moreover, they are expected to generate savings in user time, vehicle operating costs, road accident costs, local air/noise emissions, as well as a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions as a result of the expected shift of passengers from road to electric transport modes.
“It is under the negotiation with public authorities. We expect to sign it before the end of the year if possible. Everything is ready and now we negotiate our contract with your (Ukrainian, - ed.) authorities. So we are at that stage.”
The Senior Corporate Banker of the European Investment Bank is confident in allocating 1.2 billion Euro support to Ukraine in 2017 (to compare it was 800 million Euro in 2016).
“What we are working on and I’m pretty confident that we can make it. Again there are still a few weeks before the end of the year because you know we close our office on the 31st of December. So signature is the measurement of our performance. So I am pretty confident that we can make it. But these few weeks left are extremely busy because this is where we are – discussing with the government as well as with the private sector, to negotiate our contracts and we are able to sing it. As soon as January we will be able to make final calculation about where we stand, but we are pretty close.”
Mr. Soulacroup believes that the cooperation of Ukraine with the EIB will be reinforced when the Ukraine’s EU association agreement is signed.
“When Ukraine gets integrated into the EU it will be totally different environment. Then the EU support will be under another perspective and the amounts will be different. Of course the cooperation will be reinforced. That’s the whole point of integrating of the new member country,” he said.
The Senior Corporate Banker doesn’t see any difficulties or impact in the cooperation with Ukraine in terms of Ukraine’s free trade area with Canada.
“We keep on our cooperation with Ukraine. The needs are so vast in Ukraine, that there’s room for everybody. I don’t believe in any competition.”
The ongoing aggression on the East of Ukraine doesn’t influence relations of the European Investment Bank with Ukraine.
“It doesn’t influence our relations in a sense that we keep our activity with Ukraine in the sphere of business as usual. Of course we cannot say anything about the international conflicts. But we keep providing our support to Ukraine.”