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Standard Bank Group signs affordable housing agreement with European Investment Bank

Standard Bank Group is making available up to EUR30-million for the financing of affordable housing developments in South Africa. This is part of the European Investment Bank's wider EUR150-million engagement to support investment in affordable and social housing in South Africa. Four local partners will manage the new programme in South Africa.

This is part of a framework loan that the European Investment Bank, Europe's long-term lending institution, is making available to a number of borrowers in South Africa. The funds will be used to finance the development of affordable and social housing, including student housing. The facility agreed with Standard Bank Group's subsidiary The Standard Bank of South Africa Ltd has a tenor of up to 20 years.

Simon Ridley, Standard Bank Group's Financial Director, says: "We are delighted to have raised this funding from the EIB. This is a step forward in Standard Bank's continued commitment to funding projects in the affordable housing market."

"The new housing lending programme agreed with Standard Bank in South Africa will lead to further development of affordable and social housing in South Africa. This engagement will help achieve the common objective of increasing financing to build new homes and upgrade housing across the country," says Pim van Ballekom, European Investment Bank Vice President.

"The new Affordable and Social Housing Initiative remains the European Investment Bank's most substantial financial support for low income housing outside Europe, reflecting the importance of decent housing conditions for further economic and social development in South Africa. We are confident that this new partnership, building on previous housing sector lending programmes and cooperation between the two institutions, will create jobs, stimulate economic development and improve housing for South Africans across the country."

This is the second affordable housing loan that The Standard Bank of South Africa Ltd has signed with the European Investment Bank, the first of which was concluded in 2008.

Under the initiative the European Investment Bank will contribute up to half of a housing schemes' cost. Selected housing schemes are expected to be in place by 2017 with around 6,500 construction jobs being created.

In 2012 the European Investment Bank provided nearly EUR2.2-billion for projects in a range of sectors across Africa.

About the European Investment Bank
The European Investment Bank (EIB) is the long-term lending institution of the European Union owned by its Member States. It makes long-term finance available for sound investment in order to contribute towards European Union (EU) policy goals. See www.eib.org for more

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