>@WindLandKraft GmbH
© WindLandKraft GmbH

The European Investment Bank (EIB) is providing a new EUR 85 million loan for the expansion of wind power in Lower Austria, showing that the EU bank remains strongly committed to promoting one of its key objectives – climate action and the development of renewable energy – in Austria. The EIB funds for the construction of wind farms will be channelled through the intermediary bank Raiffeisenlandesbank Niederösterreich-Wien AG (RLB NÖW). Together with the project promoter WindLandKraft GmbH, the two banks signed the loan agreement in Vienna today.

WindLandKraft GmbH will build and operate in three locations (Leopoldsdorf, Untersiebenbrunn and Engelhartstetten) a total of four wind farms comprising 34 turbines with a total capacity of 105 MW. The EUR 20 million made available today will cover the project’s initial construction phase consisting of the building of 16 turbines in Leopoldsdorf im Marchfelde and Untersiebenbrunn. These are scheduled for commissioning at the end of 2015.

EIB Vice-President Wilhelm Molterer underlined the sector’s importance: “This programme to expand renewable energy production demonstrates how seriously Austria takes climate action and environmental protection. At the same time, diversifying energy sources means greater long-term energy independence and security”, he said when signing the agreement. “Working together with local banking partners like Raiffeisenlandesbank Niederösterreich-Wien enables the rapid and targeted provision of funds to borrowers – an area in which RLB NÖW has shown itself to be an experienced and reliable EIB partner for a number of years” he continued.

Under the agreement, WindLandKraft GmbH will receive loans at favourable interest rates via SPVs set up for the individual wind farms. The long maturities matched to the projects’ life that the EIB can provide are particularly attractive.

A new EUR 20 million financing agreement in support of Energiepark Bruck/Leitha GmbH was also signed today, the latest instalment of a total EUR 140 million EIB loan to this Lower Austrian project promoter.

In the last three years alone, the EIB has provided loans totalling EUR 500 million to Austria’s wind sector. Most turbines financed are already up and running. Financing projects contributing to climate action and environmental protection is one of the EU bank’s most important tasks. Last year, lending in this area ran to a total of EUR 19 billion, with the development of renewables playing a key role. In 2013 the EIB provided loans worth around EUR 6.4 billion for this purpose, with a similar amount being targeted this year.