12° Nicosia,
19 June, 2024

Greek and Cypriot banks forge partnerships for regional infrastructure projects

Collaborative financing initiatives drive investments in geostrategic ventures

Panayiotis Rougalas

Panayiotis Rougalas

The Cypriot banking sector is actively seeking to finance major projects with significant geopolitical implications in the region. Two such projects, the East To Med Data Corridor (EMC) overhead cable system and the EuroAsia Interconnector, are set to pass through the area and require substantial funding from banks. Cypriot banks have already expressed interest or made commitments to support these projects, leveraging their excess liquidity to invest in ventures that promise viability, profitability, and economic growth.

Greek and Cypriot banks are considering syndicated loans to support either the EMC or EuroAsia Interconnector projects, recognizing that financing projects of this magnitude require collaboration and risk-sharing. Regulatory authorities typically do not permit a single bank to exclusively finance such large-scale projects.

During a press mission to Greece, Eurobank executives emphasized the importance of utilizing excess liquidity in a positive interest rate environment. They highlighted the potential of investing in projects like the EuroAsia Interconnector, which aligns with economic parameters and offers efficient alternatives to traditional banking activities. While banks evaluate each project independently based on its economic merits, they also consider the broader impact on regional development.

Eurobank's involvement in the EuroAsia Interconnector project underscores the growing collaboration between Greek and Cypriot banks to support initiatives of strategic importance. The completion of these projects will facilitate electrical interconnection, benefiting Cyprus as the last non-interconnected EU member state.

In addition to the EuroAsia Interconnector, Eurobank is exploring participation in the EMC terrestrial cable data transmission system. This collaborative financing approach involves multiple banks, including the National Bank of Greece, Alpha Bank, Piraeus Bank, and Al Jazeera Bank, pooling resources to fund critical infrastructure projects.

The EMC cable project aims to establish a data transfer corridor connecting Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Cyprus, and Greece, enhancing data connectivity across Eurasia. Meanwhile, the EuroAsia Interconnector will link the electricity grids of Israel, Cyprus, and Greece, providing a reliable green energy connection for Europe and reducing CO2 emissions.

Both projects have garnered significant attention as European Projects of Common Interest, reflecting their importance in advancing regional connectivity and sustainability goals. With Greek and Cypriot banks increasingly embracing a collaborative financing model, these initiatives are poised to contribute to economic development and energy security in the region.

[This article was translated from its Greek original and edited for brevity and clarity]

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