The Government has presented this Friday the formal candidacy of the first vice president and acting Minister of Economic Affairs, Nadia Calviño, to preside from January 2024 of the European Investment Bank (EIB), the financial arm of the EU.

The decision, advanced by El País, is a “firm commitment and with the maximum options” to “strengthen the presence and influence of our country in international organizations and the presidency of the EIB would be achieved for the first time in history”, points out the Spanish executive.

It is, the government points out, a “strong candidacy due to the experience of Vice President Calviño”, who has 12 years in the senior management of the European Commission and five years as Minister of Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation, successfully coordinating the economic policy of the Government of Spain. Opposite Calviño will have candidates like the Danish Margrethe Vestager, current vice president of the European Commission, and the former Italian Finance Minister Daniele Franco. Pending the formal evaluation on August 17, there are two other informal candidacies of two vice-presidents of the organization: the Polish Teresa Czerwińska and the Swedish Thomas Östros.

“The vice president has great prestige in the international arena and currently chairs the International Monetary and Financial Committee, the main multilateral advisory body of the International Monetary Fund. Calviño has been key in the achievement and implementation of European Next Generation funds, the deployment of which is led by Spain, meeting milestones and objectives”, points out the Spanish Executive.

The appointment would be official in January

The selection process foresees the formal validation of candidacies next Thursday, the 17th. The appointment, which requires the support of a large majority of Member States, would be agreed at the informal meeting of the Council of Ministers of Economy and Finance (ECOFIN) in Santiago de Compostela on September 15-16 and would be formally adopted by the EIB Board of Governors in October.

In parallel to this process, the renewal of the EIB vice-presidency chair that Spain shares with Portugal is pending, although according to ministry sources, we must wait for the selection process to be determined. That position is currently held by the Portuguese Ricardo Mourinho.

Calviño has the full support of the Prime Minister, Pedro Sánchez, to chair the EIB, and, if elected, she would remain in office until her official appointment next year.

Her appointment “would not affect her responsibilities as First Vice President of the Government of Spain, which she would serve until the end of the year when she would have to take up the position in January 2024”, having also completed the Spanish presidency of the Council of the EU.

Since its founding in 1958, the Bank has had 7 presidents, all men and none Spanish. Thus, Nadia Calviño would become the first female president of the EIB, a milestone for the institution and for Spain.

The EIB is the financial arm of the EU and one of the largest financial institutions in the world. “It is a strategic institution for the EU and for Spain”, says the Executive.

The body plays an important role in financing investments to boost economic growth in the EU and, as such, it will be a fundamental tool in the management of Next Generation loans. In addition, it is a key institution for financial support to Ukraine and also for promoting investment in the rest of the world.

The candidacy of Vice President Calviño “is key not only to reinforce the Spanish presence in multilateral institutions but also to continue improving the Bank’s governance and promoting the role it plays in Europe, mobilizing public and private investments that contribute to developing a green transition and fair digital and European strategic autonomy”.

The EIB is the Bank of the European Union, with its own legal personality, and is currently a key instrument for financing the green transition in the EU. It is the only Bank whose shareholders are the Member States of the EU, whose interests it represents. It is based in Luxembourg. Its partners are the 27 EU Member States. The participation of each Member State in the Bank’s capital is based on its economic weight in the EU (expressed in GDP) upon entry into the Union. Spain contributes 9.66%. In the past, the socialist Magdalena Álvarez or Emma Navarro, appointed with the PP, have been vice presidents of the entity.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *