12/17/2020 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 12/17/2020 08:07
STRASBOURG - The Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) signed an additional grant agreement with the Czech Republic for a CZK 1 200 000 contribution to the Regional Housing Programme (RHP).
This is the second contribution by the Czech Republic to the RHP, following a CZK 1 000 000 grant allocated in June 2013. The first contribution has been fully and successfully disbursed. The second grant may be used for sustainability measures, complementary to the infrastructure investments undertaken under the RHP, and for selected communication activities.
Emil Ruffer, Ambassador of the Czech Republic to the Council of Europe, maintained: 'The Czech Republic greatly appreciates the success of the Regional Housing Programme in securing housing for vulnerable displaced persons and thus contributing to building sustainable communities in the participating countries. The cooperation with and support for the Western Balkans region is a longstanding priority of the Czech foreign policy and the RHP plays an important role in the wider context of reconciliation between states and the peaceful coexistence of different communities.'
Rolf Wenzel, CEB Governor, said: 'Donors are key partners for the CEB. The grants they entrust to the Bank, regardless of size, enable the implementation of highly social projects. In this context, we warmly welcome this additional contribution to the RHP as it confirms the Czech Republic's steadfast commitment to the programme and, in general, to the CEB's social mandate'.
Czech RepublicThe Czech Republic joined the CEB in February 1999. The Bank provides financing for a wide range of social investments in municipal infrastructure improvements and for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), the latter mostly through financial intermediaries The Czech Republic has contributed grant resources to the Bank's trust funds, such as the Regional Housing Programme and the Migrant and Refugee Fund. More information can be found here.
Regional Housing ProgrammeThe Regional Housing Programme provides housing to vulnerable persons who were displaced during the 1990s conflicts in the former Yugoslavia and have been living in dire conditions ever since. The Programme targets 11 800 most vulnerable families in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro, and Serbia. It is financed, for the most part, by the international community, with the European Union, represented by the European Commission, as the largest donor.
Set up in 1956, the CEB (Council of Europe Development Bank) has 42 member states. Twenty-two Central, Eastern and South Eastern European countries, forming the Bank's target countries, are listed among the member states. As a major instrument of the policy of solidarity in Europe, the Bank finances social projects by making available resources raised in conditions reflecting the quality of its rating (Aa1 with Moody's, outlook stable, AAA with Standard & Poor's, outlook stable, AA+ with Fitch Ratings, outlook stable and AAA* with Scope Ratings, outlook stable). It thus grants loans to its member states, and to financial institutions and local authorities in its member states for the financing of projects in the social sector, in accordance with its Articles of Agreement.