6 Feb 2023 12:24

EBRD invests record 358 mln euros in Baltic nations in 2022

VILNIUS. Feb 6 (Interfax/BNS) - The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) invested a record 358 million euros in Baltic nations in 2022, an increase of nearly 22% compared with 2021, the institution said in a statement on Friday.

The high figures were driven by a record-breaking 208 million euros invested in 11 projects in Lithuania - the highest ever annual investment in the country. Among the highlights of the EBRD's activity last year was its 72 million euro investment in the bond issue of the regional food retailer Maxima Grupe, supporting the retailer's access to funding from capital markets at times of uncertainty.

In particular, the EBRD invested 72 million euros in the bonds of Lithuanian retailer Maxima Grupe, 21 million euros in the bonds of Siauliu bankas, and 97 million euros in the bonds of Luminor bank (of which 32 million euros were intended for projects in Lithuania). Furthermore, 22.5 million euros were invested in the bonds of state energy group Epso-G.

In Latvia, the bank's investments last year fell to 76 million euros (from 133 million euros in 2021), while in Estonia they rose to 74 million euros (from 56 million euros). The financial sector accounted for more than half, or 193 million euros, of all EBRD investments in the three countries.

Geopolitical and economic turbulence has significantly impacted the Baltic states, causing "reduced investor appetite in the region," the EBRD's Head of the Baltic States, Tomas Kairys, was quoted as saying in the statement. As such, the EBRD was able to step up our investments in sectors where support was most needed.

"The previous investment record for the region was in 2021 when the Bank invested 294 million euros as it sought to support the recovery of the Baltic economies from the global coronavirus pandemic," the statement said.

To date, the EBRD has invested more than 890 million euros through 105 projects in Estonia, more than 980 million euros through 100 projects in Latvia, and more than 1.3 billion through 117 projects in Lithuania.

Overall, the Bank invested a record €13.1 billion in 2022, with the green economy accounting for 50% of that total. More than 10% or 1.7 billion euros, was deployed in Ukraine.