>@Andrzej Otrębski
© Andrzej Otrębski
  • A EUR 305m loan agreement with the Polish government will help national scientific centres in Warsaw and Krakow fund projects in both early-stage and applied research activities
  • Fifth EIB loan of this kind in less than ten years, backed by Horizon 2020, The EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation

Good news for researchers and scientists in Poland. The European Investment Bank (EIB) and the Ministry of Finance have signed an agreement to finance in the years 2019-2020 wide-ranging research programmes promoted by the National Science Centre (NSC) in Krakow and the National Centre for Research and Development (NCRD) in Warsaw. The EIB loan is supported by the European Commission under the InnovFin Science initiative in the framework of Horizon 2020.

The EIB will provide a EUR 305m loan (equivalent to approximately PLN 1.3bn) to the Ministry of Finance, who will use it to complement the government funding granted by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education to the two centres to finance R&D activities of public or private entities. The National Science Centre, located in Krakow, supports basic research and projects undertaken by researchers at different stages of their career in all fields of science, technology and humanities. The National Centre for Research and Development (NCRD), located in Warsaw, supports applied research and development projects and innovation activities in Poland.

Vazil Hudak, EIB Vice-President in charge of operations in Poland, said: “Fostering innovation is one of the priorities of the EU bank. With this new agreement, we will ensure that funding for research and development in Poland benefits both early-stage and applied research, addressing the overall needs of Poland’s scientific and business community. More affordable funding along the entire value chain of research and development means that Poland will move forward towards a knowledge-based economy”.

Jerzy Kwieciński, Minister of Finance, Investment and Development said: “The meaning of projects implemented jointly with the Bank is growing, especially in the field of research and development, health care and social area, which reflects priorities of the Government's policies. Those investments in these fields will, in a long-term perspective, improve competitiveness of the Polish economy”.

Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, said: “With this agreement the European Commission shows its continuous support to research institutions and their aim to strengthen Poland’s science base for both fundamental and applied research activities. The €305 million loan will help to create the future Polish innovative products and services.”

Additional information about the agreement

The National Science Centre (NSC) in Krakow and the National Centre for Research and Development (NCRD) in Warsaw are responsible for financing projects procured on a competitive basis and carried out by public and private bodies. It is estimated that approximately 20 000 researchers annually will obtain at least some funding from the grants distributed by the two institutions. This corresponds to 15% of the total R&D workforce of the country, for a two-year period.

This is the fifth EIB loan of that kind in support of the two centres’ activity since 2011, bringing the total value of the EIB financing to EUR 1 760m for the five operations (equivalent to approximately PLN 7.5bn).

More generally, the Bank has supported the Polish science sector through 20 operations since 2004. The latest one was signed in July this year between the EIB and the Polish Finance Ministry to support the activity of the Polish Academy of Sciences with a EUR 170m loan for the years 2019-2020. In that case too, the EIB loan complemented financing by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education.


More on the EIB in Poland

Notes to editors:

About the InnovFin programme and the EIB Group

InnovFin Science, InnovFin – EU Finance for Innovators” initiative, supports R&I investments by research institutes, universities and research organisations (public or private), including the financing of buildings and other infrastructure directly related to R&I activity. The product is deployed directly by the EIB in the form of debt or equity-type financing from EUR 25 million.  Firms and other entities located in EU Member States and Horizon 2020 Associated Countries are eligible to become final beneficiaries.