The UK Infrastructure Bank has officially launched.
The Bank currently offers private sector financing and from late summer will also offer local authority lending. Applications can be made online.
Launched today at its headquarters in Leeds, it will be tasked with accelerating investment into ambitious infrastructure projects, cutting emissions and levelling up every part of the UK.
The Bank will help to finance important projects in every region and nation of the UK in sectors including clean energy, transport, digital, water and waste.
First announced by chancellor Rishi Sunak alongside the Spending Review, it will have an initial £12bn of capital to deploy and will be able to issue £10bn of government guarantees, helping to unlock more than £40bn of overall investment.
The Bank will work in partnership with local government and the private sector, harnessing investment tailored to the needs of specific infrastructure projects and offering a range of financing tools including debt, equity, and guarantees.
Sunak emphasised that it will “accelerate our ambitions for tackling climate change and levelling up, while creating new opportunities across the UK as part of our Plan for Jobs”.
He added: “Through the Bank, we are investing billions of pounds in world class infrastructure that will support people, businesses and communities in every corner of the UK.”
UK Infrastructure Bank chair Chris Grigg added: “I am delighted to be leading this institution, which will be a catalyst for investment to support regional economic growth and net zero ambitions.
I look forward to building strong partnerships with project sponsors, institutions and local leaders.”
National Infrastructure Commission chair Sir John Armitt also welcomed the launch.
“The Bank is set to become an important piece of the jigsaw for delivering the infrastructure needed to reach net zero and support economic growth in a sustainable way across all regions of the UK,” he said.
“The Commission has consistently made the case for such an institution to help catalyse the investment needed for major projects – whether they are cutting edge trials of new technologies to cut emissions or local transport systems to reduce congestion.
“Today is an important milestone and, as the Bank grows its capacity, we look forward to building an effective relationship that joins up long term thinking with resources to support delivery.”
Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership & NP11 chair Sir Roger Marsh said that the Bank’s location in Leeds “will be a real catalyst for change and a major driver of our post-pandemic recovery”.
“It will build on our long-term commitment to ensuring that the benefits of economic growth are felt by all of our communities,” he said.
“The move also signifies a new page in the relationship between the government and cities and regions across the North, where we work in partnership to unlock economic potential and deliver on the ambitions for levelling-up all parts of the country.”
Leeds City Council chief executive Tom Riordan added: “Today’s launch is a positive signal that the Bank is moving at pace and there is a strong fit with plans for investment in clean energy, transport and housing in Leeds and the North.”
Department of Civil Engineering https://www.ibu.edu.ba/department-of-civil-engineering/