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EU proposes 50-billion-euro infrastructure package

BRUSSELS, Oct. 19 (Xinhua) --- The European Commission proposed Wednesday a 50-billion-euro package on infrastructure, which will substantially improve EU`s competitiveness and employment, according to the Commission.

The package, named Connecting Europe Facility (CCF), will be aimed at constructing sustainable and fully interconnected transport, energy and digital networks, which will fill the missing links in Europe`s energy, transport and digital backbone.

"I want to be absolutely clear that an essential part of our approach is to put in place the conditions for growth and job creation," said European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso.

"We are frontloading growth so that we can take the necessary steps also to promote jobs. And investment is part of the answer," He said.

According to the Commissoin, the package will invest 31.7 billion euros to upgrade Europe`s transport infrastructure, build missing links and remove bottlenecks. This includes 10 billion euros for transport projects in the cohesion countries, with the remaining 21.7 billion available for all member states for investing in transport infrastructure.

As for energy, 9.1 billion euros will be invested in trans-European infrastructure, helping to meet the EU 2020 energy and climate objectives. The "CCF" foresees almost 9.2 billion euros to support investment in fast and very fast broadband networks and pan-European digital services.

The Commission expects CCF investments to act as a catalyst for further funding from the private and public sector by giving infrastructure projects credibility and lowering their risk profiles.

"The Connecting Europe Facility and the Project Bond Initiative are a perfect demonstration of the value added that Europe can provide," said Barroso.

Date:2011-10-20 8:29:52     
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