The European Investment Bank (EIB) is starting the new year with a change in leadership, as Barbara Balke has been appointed as the EU bank’s new Secretary General.
The General Secretariat provides the Bank with support on all governance matters and is responsible for making sure the decisions taken by the EIB’s governing bodies — starting with the EIB Board of Governors consisting of the European Union’s 27 ministers of finance — get implemented. It defines institutional strategy, provides economic analysis on countries and sectors most in need of the Bank’s involvement, and coordinates and develops relations with EU institutions, international and development finance agencies and non-governmental organisations. It is also in charge of communications and corporate responsibility.
Barbara Balke has worked at the EIB for more than 20 years, most recently as General Counsel of the EIB and Director General of the Legal Directorate. She will continue to serve in that role until further notice. She has also been the acting Director General of the Human Resources Directorate. She has focused on a broad range of corporate legal matters during her career, including policy documents, mandates and borrowing/treasury operations, and also has experience with the Bank’s lending operations, mostly in Central and Eastern Europe. Prior to joining the EIB she was an attorney at law and a member of the bar in Cologne, Germany. She qualified as a lawyer in Germany and completed a Master of Laws degree at the University of Edinburgh, followed by a Doctorate in Law from the University of Bonn.
Until the end of 2022, the General Secretariat of the EIB was led by Marjut Falkstedt, who was appointed as Chief Executive of the European Investment Fund (part of the EIB Group) from the beginning of this year.