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Document 32000Y0922(05)

Board of Governors

OJ C 271, 22.9.2000, p. 10–10 (ES, DA, DE, EL, EN, FR, IT, NL, PT, FI, SV)

In force

32000Y0922(05)

Board of Governors

Official Journal C 271 , 22/09/2000 P. 0010 - 0010


Board of Governors

(2000/C 271/10)

THE BOARD OF GOVERNORS OF THE EUROPEAN INVESTMENT BANK,

Whereas the Board of Governors, by its decision taken by unanimity on 20 August 1997, endorsed the Bank's Amsterdam special action programme (ASAP), responding to the European Council's resolution of 16 June 1997 on growth and employment, and authorised inter alia the use of an overall amount of ECU 1 billion from the Bank's annual surpluses arising in the years 1996 to 1999 for new financing instruments, including the provision of risk capital to certain categories of enterprises through suitable intermediaries;

Whereas the Cologne European Council on 3 and 4 June 1999 underlined the need for an investment initiative in Europe and called for extra incentives for higher employment and investment, including "a broadening of the European Investment Bank's activities" and invited the Bank in particular to "make available an extra one billion euro for risk-capital funding benefiting high-technology investments of small and medium-sized enterprises in the period 2000 to 2003";

Whereas the Lisbon European Council on 23 and 24 March 2000 welcomed the contribution which the Bank stands ready to make in, among others, the areas covered by the "Innovation 2000 initiative" and has in particular invited the Bank to go ahead with its plans to make another billion euro available from its surpluses for venture capital operations for SMEs over the next three years;

Whereas these requests recognise the continuing need for the Bank to provide risk-capital financing for SMEs;

Whereas it is recalled that the Board of Governors in its decision of 20 August 1997 considered that while risk capital investments or lending instruments involving particular risks are not among the Bank's statutory activities, such facilities, including in particular the provision of risk capital for certain categories of SMEs, were an appropriate way of complementing the Bank's customary activities and of contributing to the objectives of the European Council's resolution, and that it was appropriate for excess resources from the Bank's surplus to be used to extend the forms of the Bank's financing in a manner compatible with its mission;

Whereas these considerations remain valid, and whereas the state of the Bank's reserves continues to exceed what can be deemed necessary to support the Bank's regular lending activities;

Whereas it is therefore appropriate to continue to allocate excess resources from the Bank's annual surpluses for instruments designed to provide risk capital for SMEs, in line with the framework established for this purpose in the abovementioned decision of 1997;

Whereas risk capital operations or related mandates under the following decision shall be approved by the Board of Directors in accordance with the Bank's normal procedures,

HEREBY DECIDES:

1. to respond to the European Council's resolutions of 4 June 1999 and of 23/24 March 2000 inviting the Bank to make available an extra one billion euro for risk-capital funding benefiting high-technology investments of small and medium-sized enterprises;

2. that an amount of up to EUR 1 billion from the Bank's annual surpluses in the years 1999 to 2002 may, to the extent that these resources exceed the statutory requirements for reserves, be used for financing sound projects in the interests of the Community through instruments extending the scope of the Bank's financing through the provision of risk capital to certain categories of enterprises through suitable intermediaries, excluding any subsidies. The first allocation for these purposes from the 1999 annual surplus shall be EUR 500 million. The amount of subsequent allocations from any surplus arising in 2000 to 2002 shall be determined annually by the Board of Governors on a proposal from the Board of Directors, in the context of the approval of the Bank's balance sheets and profit and loss accounts;

3. that the operations referred to in point 2 shall be carried out in accordance with the guiding principles set out in the Annex to the Board of Governors' decision of 20 August 1997 and with the respective guidelines established, or to be established by the Board of Directors;

4. that the Board of Directors shall, in so far as it deems necessary and on the basis of proposals from the Management Committee, approve further guidelines as to the modalities for the operations referred to in point 2 in accordance with the Bank's normal procedures.

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