Check against delivery

Colleagues, friends – thank you for inviting me here today.

During my 30 plus years in public life I have seen world changing events – such as the fall of the Berlin Wall and more recently the Financial Crisis. It feels like we are going through something like that now. A moment of profound change that defines who we are and the course of how we live.

A wave of protest has created a wave of hope! The time to act is now.               

Ladies and gentlemen,

On behalf of a broad coalition of partners – including the governments of Germany, Cameroon, France, Luxemburg, Mexico, and the United Kingdom, as well as development finance institutions and city networks – I have the great honour to announce a new transformative initiative to help cities invest in low-carbon and climate resilient infrastructure. 

LUCI, the Leadership for Urban Climate Investment is launched today, bringing together existing and future initiatives under the leadership of Germany’s environment ministry BMU.

LUCI will accelerate urban climate finance and reinforce national framework conditions for urban investments. It will strengthen the capacity of 2 000 cities over the next six years in project preparation - and it will link 1 000 new projects to finance.

One way it will do this is through the Cities Climate Finance Gap Fund. Germany and Luxembourg are leading the way here with respective grant contributions of up to 40 and 10 million euros each to the fund.

Ladies and gentlemen,

The EIB Group is stepping up its climate ambitions. We aim to unlock more than 1.1 trillion dollars of climate action and environmental investment over the next decade through EIB financing. A significant share of this will be in cities.

To achieve this at least 50% of EIB finance will be for climate action and environmental sustainability by 2025.

In addition, by the end of 2020, we will align all our financing activities with the goals of the Paris Agreement. As an important first step, we will phase out energy projects that depend on fossil fuels.

And we will position EIB as an incubator for climate finance and expertise to mobilize others, helping our societies and economies transform to a low carbon future. We expect LUCI to be an indispensable tool on this journey.

Thank you very much!