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Austrian housing investment bank expects EU approval in September

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Austrian housing investment bank expects EU approval in September

Austria's housing investment bank, Wohnbauinvestitionsbank, or the WBIB, set up by the government to support the construction of affordable housing in the country, is expected to receive EU approval to start operations in September, according to WBIB executive Josef Schmidinger.

In a first step, WBIB plans to take out €700 million in loans from the European Investment Bank, with the Austrian state to provide guarantees for the amount, Der Standard reported Aug. 14, citing a TV interview with Schmidinger.

WBIB is organized as a private company and is owned by large Austrian banks, thereby allowing the government to fund the planned affordable housing initiative without using taxpayer money directly.

According to the plan, WBIB should finance the building of 30,000 residential housing units within five to seven years.