Working for clean air and energy efficiency in Poland ©EIB
  • The European Investment Advisory Hub 2018 roadshow started in Warsaw
  • Out of 24 requests of advisory received so far from Polish promoters, one in four come from the energy sector
  • Poznan social housing project shows how advisory and lending can be combined successfully

How to promote and finance a more efficient energy sector in Poland using the instruments of the Investment Plan for Europe, or “Juncker Plan” – that was the theme of a conference organized in Warsaw on the 19th of February by the European Investment Advisory Hub (EIAH) together with the European Commission, the Polish Ministry of Investment and Development (MIiR), the national promotional bank BGK (Bank Gospodarstwa Krajowego) and the Polish Bank Association.

An expert audience of over 160 people attended the event, which was opened by EIB Vice-President Vazil Hudak, Deputy Secretary of State at MIiR, Witold Slowik, and President of the Management Board of BGK, Beata Daszynska-Muzyczka.

“The Investment Plan for Europe has an important component in investment support and advisory services. Having the right project in place allows for a better access to funding. The EIB, together with its Polish partners, is ready to help the energy sector in Poland to become more efficient, clean and secure and to catch all the financing opportunities that are available within the Juncker Plan”, said Vazil Hudak, EIB Vice-President.

To date, 24 advisory requests from Polish promoters from all fields of activity were received by the European Investment Advisory Hub, of which 9 coming from the private sector. Projects referring to the development of the energy sector represent 25% of the requests, while environment and resource efficiency account for 21%. As Poland is among the EU Member States where EIAH has been more active during 2017, more requests for advisory are expected to come in this year.  

With this in mind, experts from the EIB and the EIAH presented the advisory tools and financial instruments available to Polish companies and promoters willing to develop energy efficient and environmental friendly projects in all sectors, ranging from residential households and communal heating programs to large energy infrastructure based on project finance (PF) and public private partnership (PPP).

Fighting pollution and achieving clean air was a common fil rouge of the debate, with a focus  on situations that can have an impact on people’s everyday life. The Poznan case study was presented, showing how EIAH advisory and EIB lending can be successfully combined. In January, the EIB announced that it was lending 42 million euro (PLN 178m) to ZKZL (Zarzad Komunalnych Zasobów Lokalowych), a municipal company of the City of Poznan, to build and renovate over 1.000 social housing building in the urban perimeter, benefiting nearly 3.000 people and achieving energy savings of approx. 3,100 MWh per year. This is the first EIB lending to a social housing association following the “Poland Social and Affordable Housing Investment Platform” signed in May 2017 with the national promotional bank BGK.

This innovative loan was made possible inter alia by the support provided by the Advisory Hub to ZKZL in the year-long project definition phase. The EIAH in fact helped ZKZL to make its project “bankable”. Today, the Poznan loan is considered as an example for further such transactions in Poland, for the benefit of an urban population in need of affordable housing.

Energy efficiency and clean air will by all means continue to keep both businessmen and experts busy. As EIB Vice President Vazil Hudak commented, “with Poland hosting the COP 24 United Nations conference on climate in Katowice in December, we have the chance this year to further promote an environmental friendly energy sector".  

The European Investment Advisory Hub roadshow continues next month in Budapest (1 March), Zagreb (6 March), Bratislava (12 March).

Read more about the Poznan social housing project here: