Austria: First EFSI operation signed
- Jun 2, 2016
Since May 2013, Energiepark Bruck/Leitha and EIB have been working together to implement wind power projects. Based on this collective experience over the last few years, the Hof/Seibersdorf wind farm project is now the first Austrian initiative to secure finance from the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI). In total, EUR 40 million has been made available from the Fund to finance the project. With the backing of its local financial partner Erste Bank, which is also providing EUR 20.4m, the wind farm project is now expected to be completed by the end of the year.
The European Investment Bank and Erste Bank finance the Hof/Seibersdorf wind farm project.
Energiepark Bruck/Leitha uses again a combination of European and local partners to fund the ongoing Hof/Seibersdorf wind farm project.
Since May 2013, Energiepark Bruck/Leitha and European Investment Bank have been working together to implement wind power projects. Based on this collective experience over the last few years, the Hof/Seibersdorf wind farm project is now the first Austrian initiative to secure finance from the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI). In total, EUR 40 million has been made available from the Fund to finance the project. With the backing of its local financial partner Erste Bank, which is also providing EUR 20.4m, the wind farm project is now expected to be completed by the end of the year.
CEO of Energiepark Bruck/Leitha GmbH Michael Hannesschläger is of course delighted with the successful conclusion of the financing agreement: "Being the only Austrian company so far to enjoy the support of the EFSI Fund makes us proud, and this confirms once again that Energiepark Bruck/Leitha deserves its reputation as a pioneer.”
A total of 12 wind turbines, each with a capacity of 3 MW, are being installed on the two sites at an overall cost of EUR 70m. These wind power installations will generate sufficient climate-friendly electricity per year for 27 000 homes. The type of turbine selected is a further innovation for Austria: the Enercon E-115 is being used on these sites for the first time in the country.
The leaders of the two institutions, EIB Vice-President Ambroise Fayolle and Erste Bank Oesterreich Chairman Thomas Uher were therefore eager to take part in the formal contract signing ceremony. Before signing, however, they were given the opportunity to visit the Hof/Seibersdorf wind farm which is already under construction, together with Mayor of Seibersdorf Franz Ehrenhofer and Mayor of Hof Hubert Germershausen.
"The promotion of a sustainable, competitive and secure energy supply is a key EU policy objective and an important area of lending activity for the European Investment Bank. We are very pleased to be able to promote the development of renewable energies in Austria in close - and already successful - cooperation with our Austrian partners. We are doing this with the aid of the EFSI guarantee facility, set up from the EU budget and the EIB’s own resources, and managed by the Bank. The Hof/Seibersdorf wind farm project is a further clear sign that Austria takes climate and environmental protection very seriously,” said the EIB Vice-President responsible for Austria, Ambroise Fayolle.
Thomas Uher, Chairman of Erste Bank's Board of Directors added from the Austrian point of view, “In Europe, there is a clear orientation towards renewable energies. We want to support this pro-actively. By financing this wind farm, Erste Bank is contributing to the energy transition.”
The final signing of the contract then took place at Energiepark Bruck/Leitha.
Provincial Councillor Dr Stephan Pernkopf also sent his congratulations on the conclusion of the contract, welcoming the fact that EFSI was investing in Lower Austria's energy projects "Lower Austria is leading the way in energy transition; our electricity demand will be covered in full by renewable energy sources. This not only helps the environment, but also the national economy to a significant extent. This multi-million investment under the Juncker Plan is both an economic milestone and special European award for the energy policy of Lower Austria!”
Once the two sites in Hof and Seibersdorf are operational, Energiepark Bruck/Leitha with its total of six wind farms will make a considerable contribution towards supplying Austria with climate-friendly energy.