The EIB is lending €190 million to Evides, a public water company, to improve and maintain its water distribution network beyond 2024, making it more climate-resilient.
The project is expected to secure or enhance quality for up to 2.5 million residents in three southern provinces of the Netherlands.
The European Investment Bank (EIB) has signed a €190 million loan agreement with Evides, the company that manages the drinking water supply in large parts of the south-western Netherlands. The loan supports investments to improve the quality and functionality of water treatment and distribution facilities, and will increase the resilience of the surface water supply during long periods of extreme weather events foreseen in the future, such as more frequent and prolonged drought periods.
More specifically, the financing will sustain Evides’ 2020-2024 investment programme, focusing mainly on the rehabilitation and upgrading of production installations, storage facilities and pumping stations. The project will thus secure or enhance the quality of life of up to 2.5 million residents in the provinces of Zeeland, the south-west of the province South-Holland and the west of the province North Brabant, by improving the reliability and affordability of the drinking water supply service.
“Many people don’t realise the amount of work and investment that goes into the upkeep of such a high quality water network as that of the Netherlands,” said the head of the EIB’s Amsterdam office, Els Sweeney-Bindels. “The EIB has a long track record in the country, having financed nearly all water companies in the last five years, and we’re happy to support Evides again in their push to provide high quality water to their clients.”
“This new facility underlines the mutual trust between the EIB and Evides Waterbedrijf. As a company, we are glad to be able to count on the financial support of the EIB to realise our investment ambitions for a reliable water supply in the years to come,” added Edgar Ruijgers, CFO at Evides N.V.
This is the second operation with Evides funded by the Bank, after a previous operation in 2014.
The European Investment Bank is the European Union's long-term lending institution. This Bank is directly owned by the Member States – the Netherlands owns slightly more than 5% of the shares – and can therefore borrow very cheaply on the capital market. The EIB thus makes long-term financing available for solid investments to contribute to EU policy goals such as sustainable growth and job creation, as well as climate goals. In the past year, the EIB has made nearly €2.5 billion available for projects in the Netherlands, including care, SMEs and energy efficiency projects.
Evides Waterbedrijf is a water company that supplies reliable and pleasant tasting drinking water to 2.5 million clients in its home market – the southern part of the province of Zuid-Holland, the entire province of Zeeland, and the Brabantse Wal. Drinking water is prepared from water sourced 80% from the river Maas, 16% from ground water, and 4% from dune water. Evides is the second-largest water company in The Netherlands based on supply connections, supply volumes and revenue.
Climate financing by seven of the world’s largest multilateral development banks (MDBs) accounted for $61.6 billion in 2019, of which $41.5 billion (67%) was in low- and middle-income economies, according to the 2019 Joint Report on Multilateral Development Banks’ Climate Finance. The study expands the scope of reportingfor the first timeto all countries of operation. It now provides data on MDB climate finance commitments beyond those directed solely at developing and emerging economies, but with the focus remaining on low- and middle-income countries.
The EIB and the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank), Africa’s foremost multilateral trade finance institution, are directing EUR 300m of financing to support the resilience and recovery of African nations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The funds will ensure businesses across the continent have the working capital to sustain jobs and maintain vital imports. It also earmarks at least a quarter of the capital for climate change mitigation and adaptation, helping Africa maximize the opportunities of a green recovery.
The EIB and Dutch water utility Vitens have signed a EUR 150 million loan agreement. The financing will be used to carry out parts of Vitens’ 2020-2024 investment programme, covering the renewal and upgrading of water treatment plants, reservoirs and pumping stations, as well as distribution networks and water meters. Increasing the water reserves would act as a buffer to extreme weather events.