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Eur 100 million EIB loan support to kemira research in Finland

European Investment Bank - BEI/08/46   06/06/2008

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BEI/08/46

Luxembourg, 6 June 2008

Eur 100 million EIB loan support to kemira research in Finland

The European Investment Bank (EIB) is granting a loan up to EUR 100m to support the research, development and innovation activities of the Kemira Group (Kemira) in Finland. The R&D activities of Kemira aim to design more effective and efficient chemicals, often with clear environmental benefits.

The finance documentation has been signed today in Helsinki by EIB Vice-President, Eva SREJBER, Kemira Oyj CEO, Harri KERMINEN and Kemira International Finance B.V. Director, Bart KOORNHOF.

The project concerns the continuation of Kemira group’s current RDI practices and will be carried out within its existing facilities.

Kemira Group, a Finnish technology-oriented chemicals group, is a leading European producer of pulp and paper chemicals, water purification and industrial chemicals as well as paints and coatings. Its long-term collaboration with universities, institutes of technology and research institutes and the group’s own research centres’ development projects form the foundation of its R&D activities in areas such as formulation science, water treatment and nanotechnology.

The project is in line with the European Council recommendations to increase and reinforce investment in human capital, research and innovation in order to strengthen the scientific base of European industry by encouraging undertakings in research and technological development activities. Supporting the European Union’s Lisbon Strategy, aimed at building a competitive knowledge and innovation-based European economy, is a priority for the EIB’s lending activity.

Note for the editor:

The European Investment Bank Group, the banking group promoting European objectives and financing European projects, provides capital investment aimed at modernising the economies of the Member States and the countries close to the Union.

In 2007, the European Investment Bank lent a total of EUR 47.8bn for projects promoting the European Union’s policy objectives. Finance for the then EU-27 Member States represented 87% of its activities and amounted to EUR 41.4bn. To fund its activities, the EIB raised an aggregate amount of EUR 55bn on the international capital markets through 236 bond issues in 23 currencies. Owned by the Member States, the EIB (with its AAA rating) is the largest supranational issuer.

The EU's Lisbon Strategy, launched by the European Council in 2000, aims to develop the European Union into the world’s leading knowledge-based economy. Supporting this key policy - known as the Innovation 2010 Initiative - has become one of the EIB's top priorities and the Bank has pledged to make loans worth EUR 50bn available for investment in the fields of education, research and innovation by the end of the decade. This target is well on the way to being reached, since the EIB has already granted over EUR 43bn throughout the European Union since 2000. In 2000, the EIB pledged to lend EUR 50bn for innovative projects over the period 2000-2010. As it turned out, the Bank was three years early in reaching its objective. With EUR 10.3bn in loans under i2i in 2007, total innovation lending stood at EUR 56bn at the end of the year. The EIB's approach to implementation of the Lisbon Strategy is focused on the links between knowledge creation and the market. It involves all phases of the education cycle, research and development (R&D), the transformation of innovation into investment, productivity gains and increasing the competitiveness of the European economy. Over the last five years, the EIB has granted a total of EUR 1.2bn worth of loans for health and education infrastructure in Finland of which EUR 100m for the extension of science parks in a number of large towns or cities.

In 2007, the EIB opened a regional Office in Helsinki, located at the headquarters of the Nordic Investment Bank (NIB), with a view to enhancing the Bank’s presence in the Baltic Sea region.

Contacts:
Helen Kavvadia, tel.: +352 4379-83134; e-mail: h.kavvadia@eib.org, http://www.eib.org/


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