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European Investment Bank

Volume 501: debated on Tuesday 24 November 2009

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what steps his Department has taken to help UK businesses apply for European Investment Bank funds. (300364)

The Government are committed to helping UK businesses access European investment Bank (EIB) funding, whether direct loans for large projects and businesses or intermediated loans for small businesses and projects.

In particular, over the last 12 months the Government have:

Announced that UK small businesses stand to benefit from up to £4 billion of lending from the EIB between 2008 and 2011 through intermediating banks.

Called for the EIB to double its financial support for research and development programmes in the automotive sector, by making available €8 billion over 2009 and 2010 through the European Clean Transport Facility.

Announced that UK renewable and energy projects stand to benefit from up to £4 billion of new capital from the EIB, including a specific £700 million intermediated lending scheme for small and medium sized renewable energy projects.

However, while the Government can play a facilitating role, businesses must apply directly to the EIB (or UK banks in the case of intermediated lending) and applications are assessed according to the EIB's (or the relevant UK banks') own internal appraisal processes.