Beyrouth, le 27/7/2000



Intervention of the European Investment Bank (EIB)

Senior Operations Officer for Lebanon - Mr. Alberto Barragan


Mr. Prime Ministers, distinguished delegates,


I should like to thank the Lebanese Government for the organization of this conference and for the excellent visit, which we had yesterday to Southern Lebanon, which was most enlighting.


The EIB has since 1993 approved loans of nearby 600m EURO for Lebanon, mostly in support of infrastructure development and rehabilitation. Examples of this are projects in electricity distribution rehabilitation, water and wastewater in several Lebanese cities, roads, as well as the Port of Beirut expansion and the expansion of the Beirut International Airport and provision of air traffic services. In addition, we have provided funding to the Lebanese banking sector for on-lending to the private sector in the areas of industry and tourism.


Concerning the rehabilitation and reconstruction of Southern Lebanon. The EIB stands ready to support Lebanon in its reconstruction efforts for the South.


We have taken note of your needs of physical infrastructure investments, mainly in water and wastewater, energy, roads and telecommunications. We now look forward to studying the documents submitted to us and to discuss with the Lebanese ministries and authorities in order to evaluate how the EIB can help in this respect.


, Our previous experience with reconstruction programs has proved that strong national administrative and implementation bodies are essential to be able to prioritize, prepare, design and coordinate the implementation of projects.


We therefore look forward to discussing the infrastructure investment priorities with the relevant Lebanese authorities.