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The European Investment Bank (EIB) has launched a new streamlined lending programme to support higher education facilities across Europe. Two recent beneficiaries of EIB funding have been the University of Bath and the University of Leicester in the UK. The University of Bath will receive GBP 65 million (EUR 76 million) from the EIB for the construction of new academic buildings and student residences, as well as for the refurbishment of teaching and research facilities. The University of Leicester is being provided with an investment fund of GBP 55 million (EUR 64.4 million) for the renovation of the landmark engineering building, the construction of a new medical sciences building, library improvements and refurbishment of sports facilities. In both cases the funds also aim at improving the energy efficiency of the universities, thus minimising costs on a long-term basis. Construction works have started this year and are to be completed by the end of 2016.
The EIB as the European Union’s long-term lending institution is keen to meet investment needs for universities and higher education institutions and recognises the need for future investment in this field. During the last five years, more than GBP 17 billion (EUR 19.9 billion) were provided by the EIB for education projects in Europe. The EIB expects to provide GBP 200 million (EUR 234 million) on a yearly basis for further investments in the field of education.