Micro and macro backing for Europe
The EIB supports a wide range of initiatives across the EU, from small businesses to large and vital strategic infrastructure, from climate action to skills and innovation. All match the ultimate ambition of the EIB and the Member States: to create jobs and sustainable growth in Europe.
Denmark: A modern Scandinavian landmark
The idea of building a fixed link between Denmark and Sweden across the Øresund strait is similar to the Channel or Bosphorus Tunnel: a longstanding and ambitious dream rendered real and operational.
The EIB contributed EUR 1.1bn towards the construction of the now iconic Øresund Bridge, which opened in 2000. It links Malmö and Copenhagen via four lanes of traffic and two rail lines, thereby physically joining Scandinavia with mainland Europe.
Around two thirds of people crossing the bridge take the train. The journey from Copenhagen to Malmö and vice versa takes 35 minutes. Effectively, this project has created the new region of Øresund, made up of Scania in Sweden and Zealand in Denmark. The area around the bridge is home to 3.7m people who can travel around easily and live on one side and work on the other.
Germany: Turning the Ruhr green and blue
The restoration of the Emscher river ecosystem, in Germany’s Ruhr region, is the largest ongoing environmental infrastructure programme in Europe. The EIB has lent EUR 900m to support efforts to clean up 350km of water courses and surrounding areas that have been blighted and scarred by the intense industrial activities in the Ruhr, which is home to five million people.
To reverse the damage caused by a century of mining and open sewerage, a new sewage canal is under construction, 51km long and up to 40m deep in places. The total cost of the operation will be around EUR 4.5bn, and it is creating an estimated 1 400 jobs per year.
In addition to the world’s most modern wastewater system, scheduled to enter service in 2017, the river landscape will also be reconstructed making for a far more attractive place to live.
First rate treatment for Malta’s cancer patients
A cutting edge and holistic new cancer treatment centre is scheduled to open in Malta towards the end of 2014, on the grounds of the island’s main healthcare facility, the Mater Dei Hospital. It is part of the Maltese government’s “Investing in your Future” scheme, and is being co-financed with European regional development funds. JASPERS experts provided the assessment of cost benefit analysis and presentation of technical solutions.
The new oncology centre will be more than just a building for medical equipment. It will triple cancer patient and treatment capacity, and the design aspires to provide an optimal environment for treatment outcomes beyond technology. With soothing colours and personal care, inpatients and outpatients will be placed first in every way possible.
Spain: Twin-pronged innovation for SMEs in Navarra
Small businesses with up to 10 employees account for 84% of companies in Navarra, northern Spain. The region is showing confidence in these businesses and has revolutionised its business environment through the Model of Economic Development of Navarra (Moderna), which focuses on green, health and talent economics.
An EIB loan of EUR 250m is supporting SME projects in industry, services and RDI, with the goal of making Navarra one of the most competitive places in the EU. Examples of companies supported include Bonopark, who design and make electric bikes (pictured), 3P Biopharmaceuticals, who invested in new equipment for their RDI programmes, and Playing For Learning, a company which received funding for an educational video game which teaches English.
By 2015, about 300 SMEs in Navarra will have received funding through the programme, showing that Moderna sets a fine example to the EU as a whole.