On 17 November 2021, the Board of Directors of the European Investment Bank approved the revised EIB Group Transparency Policy, following an extensive public consultation.
The Transparency Policy is the EIB’s most read policy. This updated edition is the result of many years of experience and exchanges with stakeholders. It takes into account all contributions received during the public consultation and incorporates key suggestions for improvement received from the European Parliament and the European Ombudsman. The Transparency Policy takes into account the relevant European Union’s transparency rules and practices, and is in line with the policies of other international financial institutions.
The revised Transparency Policy reaffirms the guiding principles of openness, ensuring trust and safeguarding sensitive information, and willingness to listen and engage. These guiding principles apply to the EIB Group, which comprises the European Investment Bank and the European Investment Fund (EIF), while the more detailed provisions of the Policy apply only to the EIB as EIF has its own transparency policy.
Based on these guiding principles, the Transparency Policy provides for:
- Proactive publication, notably covering key project information as well as environmental and social documents;
- A presumption of disclosure, according to which all information and documents held by the EIB may be disclosed upon request, subject to limited disclosure exceptions to protect legitimate interests (such as privacy and commercial interests); and
- Stakeholder engagement, notably through public consultation on selected EIB policies.
Highlights of the improvements to the revised Transparency Policy include:
- Governance: publication of calendars of the regular meetings of the Board of Directors, Management Committee and Audit Committee;
- Intermediated finance operations: commitment to publish summaries of sub-projects financed through financial intermediaries with a total project cost greater than €50 million (considering that the EIB typically finances only up to 50% of project costs, the related EIB loan would normally be €25 million or higher);
- Additionality and impact: commitment to publish Additionality Impact Statements of EIB operations describing how the EIB delivers additionality and impact through the projects it invests in, and to publish such statements following signature;
- Commercial interests: increased clarity about this disclosure exception, with non-exhaustive examples of common cases of commercial interests.
The revised Transparency Policy will be made available in all official languages of the European Union on the EIB’s website.