What is the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI)?

What is the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI)?

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EFSI is an initiative launched jointly by the EIB Group – the European Investment Bank and European Investment Fund – and the European Commission to help overcome the current investment gap in the EU. EFSI is one of the three pillars of the Investment Plan for Europe that aims to revive investment in strategic projects around the continent to ensure that money reaches the real economy.

The European Fund for Strategic Investments

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Years of crisis have posed a threat to Europe’s potential for innovative growth and dulled our competitive edge. Competitiveness relies on investment. In Europe, good projects currently struggle to find investment. Money is available in the system but economic uncertainty stops many investors from taking risks. The Investment Plan for Europe is putting our money back to work – for the benefit of all Europeans.

How does EFSI work?

EFSI is a EUR 26 billion guarantee from the EU budget, complemented by a EUR 7.5 billion allocation of the EIB’s own capital. The total amount of EUR 33.5 billion aims to unlock additional investment of at least EUR 500bn by 2020. EFSI is implemented by the EIB Group and projects supported by it are subject to usual EIB procedures.

What’s the focus of EFSI?

With EFSI support, the EIB Group is providing funding for economically viable projects, especially for projects with a higher risk profile than usually taken on by the Bank. It will focus on sectors of key importance for the European economy, including:

  • Strategic infrastructure including digital, transport and energy
  • Education, research, development and innovation
  • Renewable energy and resource efficiency
  • Support for small and mid-sized businesses

Where will EFSI support operations?

EFSI is demand-driven and provides support for projects everywhere in the EU, including cross-border projects. There are no geographic or sector quotas. Projects are considered based on their individual merits.

For information on how to apply for a loan under EFSI see How does a project get EFSI financing?

Why a European Fund for Strategic Investments?

Studies revealed an investment gap in Europe with investment levels 15% lower than pre-crisis levels. This investment gap points to a market failure and a reduced capacity of investors to take risks.

In order to remedy this gap, recover from the crisis and strengthen its global competitiveness, the EU developed a three-pronged strategy known as the Investment Plan for Europe.

The Investment Plan for Europe consists of:

The Advisory Hub: Europe’s gateway to investment support

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Social housing, hospitals, public transport networks…all the major infrastructure that makes a difference to our daily lives started off as a project. But getting the funding and expertise together to turn a project into reality is not always easy. Public authorities and private companies from all over the European Union have a new partner to help them get their projects off the ground: the European Investment Advisory Hub.