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Ambroise Fayolle, Vice-President of the European Investment Bank (EIB), and Odile Renaud-Basso, Deputy CEO and Director of Savings Funds at Caisse des Dépôts (CDC), announced their EUR 230m joint financing package for rehabilitation work under the Lyon Cité Campus energy-efficiency operation, in the presence of Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, Minister of National Education, Higher Education and Research, Gérard Collomb, President of Lyon Métropole, Jean-Paul Bret, Mayor of Villeurbanne, Yannick Neuder, Vice-President of the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Region, and Khaled Bouabdallah, President of Lyon University.

Caisse des Dépôts is advancing EUR 105m and the EIB EUR 125m to finance the project, which will enable crucial energy-efficiency renovation work to be carried out on 22 buildings in the science centres of the LyonTech-La Doua Campus. The work will begin during 2016 and is expected to be completed by 2021, the estimated delivery date of the final building.

This joint CDC/EIB operation will enable Lyon University to benefit from attractive financing conditions over a long term and at a competitive rate.

The project has a twofold objective:

  • to improve the living and working conditions of the students through high-quality buildings;
  • to reduce the energy consumption of the campus by 40% by 2021.

As the university's partner since 2008, Caisse des Dépôts is renewing its commitment to Lyon University through this financing operation, which consists of "green growth" loans from savings funds.

Since it is deeply involved in the development of French universities, Caisse des Dépôts has already channelled over EUR 1m of engineering subsidies into the Lyon-Saint-Etienne site for the preparation of master plans for property and site development, the digital university project and the ecological and energy-efficiency renovation of infrastructure.

Caisse des Dépôts is also helping to finance the renovation of university campuses with long-term loans under the EUR 20bn facility open to the local public sector over the period 2013-2017, a quarter of which is earmarked for "green growth" loans.

The Caisse des Dépôts Group is stepping up its activity in support of the environmental and energy transition by deploying funds over the next few months which will help to accelerate this shift, including, in particular, an interest-free, long-term loan for the rehabilitation of public buildings.

Training for young people and climate action: priorities for the EIB

A key player in reviving the economy through investment in France, where it provided more than EUR 8.7bn of new loans in 2015, the EIB – the bank of the European Union – has made it a priority to support training for young people to increase their chances of a success and climate action, by assisting the renovation and energy-efficiency projects of schools and training facilities in France, ranging from secondary schools to universities, Grandes Écoles and research institutes.

The EIB loan for the Lyon Campus reflects the Bank's strong commitment to higher education and research in accordance with the European Council's priorities for youth employment. It forms part of the large-scale EUR 1.3bn financing facility deployed by the EU bank since 2013 to support the investments of the 13 university sites that were successful candidates under the Operation Campus initiative with a view to encouraging the development of international centres of academic excellence in France.