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The EUR 250m loan granted by the European Investment Bank (EIB) to Montpellier Agglomération for line 3 of its tramway network represents a concrete project benefiting all inhabitants of the Greater Montpellier area and its numerous visitors. EIB Vice-President Philippe de Fontaine Vive stated: “I am very pleased about this quality, long-term partnership with Montpellier Agglomération on a project for its population that meets the objective of sustainable development. Sustainable urban transport is an EU priority and a crucial component of economic development and social cohesion that contributes directly towards improving people’s daily quality of life.”

More specifically, the EIB’s financing of line 3 of the tramway will concern the renovation of four stations, the construction of 26 stations and the acquisition of 22 trams each with a capacity of 300 passengers.

This loan is another example of the EIB’s ongoing priority operations being carried out in France in the field of sustainable public transport aimed at significantly reducing urban pollution and lowering CO2 emissions (target of 20% by 2020). The EIB is the main investor in the sustainable public transport sector in France and makes all its technical and financial expertise available on attractive lending terms to local authorities to enable them to develop public transport modes as an alternative to private cars. The EIB has financed 24 tramways throughout France and supported eight French regions with their rail network upgrading projects. High-speed railway lines are also one of the EIB’s core activities in France: the Bank recently signed an aggregate loan of EUR 1.2bn for the LGV Sud Europe Atlantique high-speed line and has already undertaken to support the Nîmes-Montpellier high-speed rail bypass under a PPP arrangement.

Note to editors:

The EIB, the bank of the European Union

With finance totalling EUR 4.9bn provided in France in 2010, the EIB continues to act as a catalyst within the French economy, particularly in the key sectors of climate action, sustainable public transport, innovation and R&D. Its remit is to provide mainly long-term loans to support viable investment projects, both private and public, that explicitly comply with the Union’s six priority policies: economic and social cohesion; the protection of the natural and urban environment; research and innovation; support for SMEs; sustainable transport and development of trans-European transport networks; and the promotion of secure, competitive and sustainable energy supplies.

Key figures

EIB lending in 2010, particularly in support of local authorities and businesses: EUR 72bn in total, i.e. 460 projects financed

France: EUR 4.9bn, i.e. 30 projects financed

Public transport

European Union: EUR 8.6bn in 2010, i.e. EUR 23.7bn since 2000

France: EUR 540m in 2010, i.e. EUR 4bn since 2000

La 1ère rame de la ligne 3 de tramway de Montpellier Agglomération sur les rails !

3e ligne de tramway - Montpellier Agglomération signe un contrat de financement avec la Banque européenne d’investissement