First EIB Circular Economy Conference in Copenhagen
29 October 2018
More than 200 people gathered on 25 October 2018 at European Investment Bank’s first circular economy conference held in Copenhagen and organized by the EIB Institute. The conference brought together leading representatives and stakeholders from government, local authorities, industry and the financing sector to share knowledge and lessons learnt related to the following important areas: (1) plastics in the circular economy; (2) the circular bio-economy; and (3) the circular economy in cities.
In her opening remarks, EIB Vice-President Emma Navarro highlighted the EIB’s support to circular economy projects: “The future needs to be circular. It is an opportunity to combat climate change while making our economy more sustainable, create jobs and generate competitive advantages. The EIB provided EUR 2.1 billion of financing for circular economy projects during the last 5 years and we stand ready to do more through our lending and advisory services.”
The Vice-President also announced the creation of a working group with the main national promotional banks – KfW in Germany, CDC in France, CDP in Italy, ICO in Spain and BGK in Poland – to focus on the needs and potential of circular economy projects. She highlighted the publication of the new EIB Circular Economy Guide aiming to promote a common understanding of circular economy, and raise awareness about and promote circular solutions.
European Commissioner Karmenu Vella joined by video and stressed the need to curb the use of disposable single-use plastics. Other representatives from the European Commission presented the EU policies and strategies for circular economy and waste management in particular for plastics and construction waste.
The conference also highlighted a selection of projects across Europe, related to plastic upcycling, biofuel and bioplastics production, paper recycling and stories of circular initiatives from cities such as Copenhagen, Amsterdam and Kolding (Denmark).
Organised by the European Commission and the European Investment Bank in cooperation with Project Syndicate, the event put EU climate leadership in the spotlight. It brought together international climate leaders and policy experts on how global climate action, climate policy, international cooperation, and financial innovation can be accelerated and enhanced for an adequate response to the climate emergency.
The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically reshaped the global economic environment and financial priorities. For development finance, the crisis has created a need for more fluid mobilization of resources while keeping sight of long-term climate and sustainability goals.