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Finance minister proposes EU investment fund

PR dla Zagranicy
Peter Gentle 05.09.2014 13:00
Poland’s Finance Minister Mateusz Szczurek has suggested the establishment of a European fund investing in large infrastructure projects.

photo - EU

In a speech at the Bruegel think tank in Brussels, Szczurek said that the European Union should earmark 700 million euro for a joint fund.

The money would come from member states and it would not be counted as part of their budget deficit.

What the minister called the 'European Fund for Investment' should be established, in his opinion, as a special purpose vehicle of the European Investment Bank.

It could borrow money on financial markets and invest into major pan-European projects, especially in the areas of transportation, energy, IT and defence.

According to Szczurek, the fund would be a remedy in a situation when member state governments have cut down on infrastructure investments and the region faces slow growth. The private sector is also less keen on investments than it was before.

“As a continent, we are doing worse than Japan in the aftermath of the financial meltdown of the 80s and worse than during the Great Depression in the 30s,” the minister said. He added that the EU needs not just extra funds, but proper investment outlays.

The finance minister said he had not discussed the idea with his peers from other EU member states or with PM Donald Tusk, who is set to take over as European Council president in December. Nevertheless, he hopes for support at the EU finance ministers meeting in Milan next week. (kw)

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