The European Investment Bank Group (EIB) said it signed €88 billion in funding in 2023 for over 900 high-impact projects in key policy areas such as transport infrastructure and urban mobility, energy and water, digitalisation, new technologies, innovation, healthcare, affordable housing, education and support for SMEs.
A record €49 billion was invested in green finance in 2023, the bank said.
The European Investment Bank is the long-term lending institution of the European Union, owned by its member states.
EIB President Nadia Calviño said: “Across Europe, the EIB Group is delivering EU priorities: boosting European competitiveness and the EU’s leadership in green technologies, and helping to ensure a more secure future for people across the Union and around the world.
“The Group kept its promises. It met and exceeded its targets on a range of key EU priorities. This will translate into tangible benefits for us all, from safer drinking water to improved public transport, from better access to vaccines to more 5G mobile coverage, from job creation and increasing competitiveness to energy security and efficiency.”
With €349 billion of green investment mobilised since 2021, the EIB said it is on track to achieve the goal of €1 trillion of green financing supported by the end of the decade.
It said €49 billion was financed directly for climate action and environmental sustainability in 2023, up from €38 billion in 2022.
In 2023, the bank’s investments included more than €21 billion as part of REPowerEU, an initiative designed to reduce Europe’s dependence on fossil fuel and accelerate the green transition. The electricity generation capacity financed will be able to power 13.8 million households.
“In a year characterised by growing instability around the world, EIB Global, the Group’s dedicated arm for investments outside of the EU, provided more than €8.4 billion for projects, almost half of which went to the world’s least developed countries and fragile states,” said the EIB.
“Overall, EIB Global financing mobilised €27 billion of investments under the EU Global Gateway initiative, ahead of schedule to reach €100 billion under the programme by 2027.
“On top of nearly €2 billion of assistance to Ukraine since Russia’s invasion, in 2023 the Bank established the EU4U Fund, supported by Member States and the European Commission, to further boost economic resilience and reconstruction in Ukraine.”
The EIB Group said it invested €19.8 billion in innovation and €20 billion to support small and medium-sized enterprises and midcaps in 2023.
This was largely thanks to investment by the European Investment Fund, the EIB Group’s specialised provider of risk finance, which last year signed close to €15 billion of investments.
This includes €1 billion under the European Tech Champions Initiative to scale up start-ups in disruptive technologies and improve Europe’s competitiveness.
Among other innovation-focused investments, beneficiaries of EIB Group financing included 19 artificial intelligence projects.
“At a time of difficult conditions for investment, the EIB Group is ready to play its countercyclical role, complementing the EU budget and supporting EU Member States and our economies, responding to strong demand across Europe, notably from the private sector,” said Calviño.
“But we know that the challenges we face demand a hugely scaled up effort, and we can help Europe do exactly that.
“This week alone, the EIB Group is announcing new projects in Sweden, Romania, Italy, Spain, France, Poland, Lithuania and Bulgaria to support new green technologies from charging stations to railways, green steel manufacturing and solar solutions.“