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July 10 (Reuters) - OTE S.A. announces that COSMOTE S.A., 100% subsidiary of OTE S.A., signed a €150 million bilateral term loan with the European Investment Bank (EIB) and an agreement with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) to raise a further €150 million as a syndicated facility. Both loans are under the corporate guarantee of OTE S.A.
The funds will be used to provide additional liquidity for COSMOTE’s mobile broadband network coverage and capacity expansion investments in Greece. The loan from EIB is provided under the European Fund for Strategic Investments. Both domestic and international banks participate in the EBRD Syndicated Loan.
OTE Group Chairman and CEO, Mr. Michael Tsamaz, commented: “Our investments are addressing the continuously evolving needs of the society and our customers, for enhanced communication networks and services. We are far and away the largest investor in telecommunications in Greece, having invested over €2 billion in the past six years and committed to another €1.5 billion by 2020, to establish optical fibre and 4G/4G+ networks. Next generations networks are not a luxury. They are the “sine qua non” of the digital age. We need to address the digital needs of customers and businesses in an environmentally friendly way to ensure our sustainability. Our cooperation with EIB and the EBRD will enable us to deliver our strategy and build the networks of the future, a prerequisite for the country’s growth.”
Mr. Nicholas Jennett, EIB Deputy Director General and Head of the Investment Team for Greece, said: “The EIB is committed to helping high quality, innovative Greek companies to realize their investment plans. We are pleased to be working with COSMOTE to enhance the company's already extensive network. This is precisely the kind of operation the Investment Plan for Europe was designed to support. I am delighted about this further step to bring the benefits of the European Fund for Strategic Investments to Greece”.
Mr. Dirk Werner, EBRD Director Information and Communication Technologies, said: “This innovative transaction with such a notable green component is a priority for the EBRD in Greece. We are delighted to support a project that will boost energy efficiency standards, the local economy and Greece’s telecoms sector as a whole.”