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    Economic and social cohesion

    Cohesion policy is unique to the European integration process. It aims to help each region achieve its full potential and to bring about a convergence of living standards and prosperity across the European Union. It was one of the original raisons d’être of the European Investment Bank upon its creation in 1958 and continues to be one of its priorities.

    The EIB’s cohesion financing mainly supports projects in cohesion regions where the GDP per inhabitant is below 90% of the EU average.


    Download the EIB Cohesion and Regional Development Overview 2021  


    How we support cohesion

    The EIB complements EU grants with loans and other financial instruments for projects and programmes that support economic, social and territorial cohesion. In addition, the Bank plays an advisory role by helping public authorities in cohesion regions improve the technical and financial quality of their projects, reinforce their institutional capacity and attract funding.

    Our annual target for cohesion lending is 30% of all new operations. In the period 2014-2020, the EIB provided €123.8 billion to projects in EU cohesion regions. For 2020 alone, this amounted to €19.5 billion.


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