In response to the earthquake that hit the Spanish city of Lorca in May 2011, the European Investment Bank (EIB) has granted a EUR 185 million loan to the Murcia Region to finance the reconstruction and refurbishment of buildings and infrastructure. EIB Vice-President Magdalena Álvarez and the President of the Murcia Region, Ramón Luis Valcárcel, signed the loan agreement this morning.

At the signing ceremony, EIB Vice-President Magdalena Álvarez underlined “the EIB’s firm commitment – alongside those of the other institutions and above all the citizens – to enable Lorca to recover as quickly as possible.” She went on to say that “the investments financed with these funds will have a positive impact on economic activity and employment in the region and will lay the foundations for economic recovery and future solid growth”.

The President of the Murcia Region, Ramón Luis Valcárcel, said that the loan marked “the beginning of the building of a new Lorca”. “Today we can affirm that the rebuilding of housing, neighbourhoods, roads, schools and the city’s cultural heritage is an unstoppable fact and that the people of Lorca can start to get over the disaster that struck one year ago” he added.

The earthquake of 11 May 2011 caused damage to housing, public buildings, cultural and historical heritage and roads in Lorca in the region of Murcia. The EIB loan is designed to finance infrastructure investments in the affected area with the aim of restoring living conditions and jobs in line with people’s needs and bringing back the city’s tourism potential.

The planned schemes comprise:

  • Rebuilding and repair of housing.
  • Restoration of cultural heritage under the Culture Ministry’s master plan.
  • Refurbishment of state schools.
  • Rebuilding and repair of regional roads (RM 701 and RM 621).

The schemes supported by this loan meet the EU objective of fostering regional development by contributing to economic and social cohesion in the Murcia region and helping EU countries or regions hit by natural disasters to survive their impact. The project is also receiving a EUR 21 million grant from the EU Solidarity Fund to alleviate the damage caused by the earthquake.