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Europe's back is to the future: Bankwatch and Counter Balance statement on the first projects of the European Fund for Strategic Investment (EFSI)

Yesterday the European Investment Bank announced the first four projects to be financed from the EUR 315 billion EFSI. These include EUR 303 million for health care research in Spain, a public-private partnership in the Irish health sector, the expansion of the Dubrovnik airport in Croatia and a nineteenth century Italian steel factory.

Tax dodging, development and European public banks

A new report highlights how the weak taxation policy of the European Investment Bank is undermining its ability to serve public interest in Europe and the Global South at a time when the use of tax haven is exposed as one of the most important barriers to development.

Guest post: Ombla must be protected, not flooded!

The project promoter of the Ombla hydropower plant in Dubrovnik, Croatia is still stubbornly pushing the project forward. A presentation yesterday of a new nature impact assessment did not offer answers to a range of outstanding questions, including the project's economic feasibility, impacts on locals and more.

"Fight tax havens, start with the European Investment Bank", argues new report

Counter Balance & Re:Common press release

The European Investment Bank (EIB) was the first Development Financial Institution (DFI) to adopt a tax haven policy in 2009. However, more than five years on EIB money still runs via tax havens. A new report by Counter Balance and Re:Common* ‘Towards a Responsible Taxation Policy for the EIB’ which is launched today calls on the EU’s public bank to grasp the political momentum at EU level to prevent any public money from flowing through tax havens. Country by country reporting, identification of beneficial ownership and a workable list of non-compliant jurisdictions would be key ingredients of a real “Responsible Taxation Policy”.

Parliament presses for more scrutiny of EU Investment Plan but guts green prospects

BRUSSELS - MEPs ditch ring fencing for energy savings but demand more democratic oversight over the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) that has been setup to implement Commission President Juncker’s economic recovery plan.

Statement on the European Parliament ITRE Committee vote

CEE Bankwatch Network, Friends of the Earth Europe and Counter Balance welcome yesterday’s vote to earmark EUR 5 billion for energy savings projects across Europe by the Parliament’s Industry, Research and Energy Committee (ITRE). The funds were allocated via an amendment to the European Fund for Strategic Investment regulation proposed by Commission president Juncker in December 2014. The vote also requires that any energy infrastructure project financed from the EUR 315 billion investment plan be in line with Europe’s long term energy and climate targets for 2050.

Local initiatives champion sustainability and resilience in central and eastern Europe

A new website with inspiring stories of local sustainable initiatives shows the very real change that small-scale projects can make for local communities.

Bankwatch statement on today's EU Council decision about the 'Energy Union'

Europe's leaders have failed today to live up to their commitments and make the EU's energy future more sustainable. The Commission's 'Energy Union' strategy endorsed today by EU Heads of States prioritises new fossil fuel infrastructure at the expense of investments into energy savings and clean energy sources.

European Parliament intergroup ITCO condemns new transparency policy of the European Investment Bank

The European Investment Bank's slide towards secrecy, manifest in its newly adopted transparency policy, has been lambasted by the intergroup of the European Parliament responsible for transparency and corruption.

Victories piling up: 130 more hectares of forest saved from lignite mining in Romania

Bucharest - A Romanian court has accepted a petition filed by Bankwatch Romania and Greenpeace Romania, and cancelled the environmental permit which allowed cutting down 130 hectares of forests - equivalent to approximately 260 football pitches - to make way for the expansion of the Pinoasa lignite open pit.

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