Philippe de Fontaine Vive Curtaz, Vice-President of the European Investment Bank (EIB) and Jean-Pierre Jouyet, CEO of the Caisse des Dépôts Group, signed a bilateral cooperation agreement today, in the presence of Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici and European Affairs Minister Thierry Repentin.

In the framework of the European Growth and Jobs Pact adopted by the EU Heads of State or Government on 28 and 29 June 2012, this cooperation is designed to provide a dedicated and specific response to the major challenge of the long-term financing of regional development projects. It will strengthen the joint capacity of the EIB and the Caisse des Dépôts Group in France by harnessing the synergies of their respective products in a one-stop-shop solution to financing the local public sector.

The approach of the two institutions is similar in terms of principles, procedures and targeted sectors, and the combination of the Caisse des Dépôts Group strong local presence in the French regions and the EIB’s financial capacity means that their actions are mutually reinforcing.

In June 2012, conscious of the key role that the EIB was destined to play in restoring growth in Europe, the Member States voted unanimously to increase its capital by €10 billion, enabling it to commit an additional €60 billion worth of financing in the European Union over the three years beginning in January 2013. In France, €7 billion has been injected into the real economy in 2013, catalysing more than €21 billion worth of investment. The EIB supports key sectors of public interest such as universities (Operation Campus), hospitals, the energy efficiency of buildings, transport and the rollout of high-speed broadband. It also finances innovative and sustainable projects and strategic infrastructure. These areas are also at the heart of the Caisse des Dépôts Group’s activity and form the basis of the enhanced cooperation between the two institutions.

This cooperation represents an extension of the successful partnership between the two organisations, especially in the framework of the Long-term Investors Club, of which they are founder members, the creation of the Marguerite and InfraMed multilateral investment funds, and joint operations with savings funds to finance large-scale PPP projects in the field of railways, universities, and so on.

Signing the bilateral agreement, Philippe de Fontaine Vive Curtaz said: “A common goal is in our DNA: to develop synergies to improve the effectiveness of our action in the French regions. It is by combining its skills and resources that Europe will rise to the economic challenges and succeed in supporting the public sector in its development, innovation and social cohesion projects. Creating jobs for young people is our top priority. This is how we will build a future for Europe’s regions, boost competitiveness and foster inclusive growth.”

Jean-Pierre Jouyet added: “Today’s agreement confirms the Caisse des Dépôts Group’s strategic role in financing projects promoting the competitiveness of our regions. And coming just a few days before the European Council meets to review the first year of implementation of the European growth and jobs pact, it underlines the Group’s commitment to Europe”. The agreement also forms a natural extension of the Caisse des Dépôts Group’s remits and echoes the deployment of the €20 billion worth of savings fund loans made available to support the local public sector over the period 2013-2017.