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Water as a vital investment in our future: the EIB at the United Nations 2023 Water Conference

  • Water as vital investment in our future: the EIB at the United Nations 2023 Water Conference
  • European Investment Bank to join the UN 2023 Water Conference, 22 to 24 March in New York.

About the entity

European Investment Bank
The EIB is the European Union's bank. We are the only bank owned by and representing the interests of the European Union Member States. We work closely with other EU institutions to implement EU policy.

The European Investment Bank (EIB) - one of the world’s biggest public lenders for water -will be attending the UN Water Conference to join the call for more investment in water to tackle the global development and climate challenges. The EIB, owned by the 27 European Union countries, will be represented by experts from its water and global directorates and by its Vice-President in charge of climate action and development, Ambroise Fayolle. Vice-President Fayolle will speak at the conference and participate in a number of side events, amongst them “Scaling up Water as Leverage for worldwide urban climate resilience” and the European Commission-chaired "Launch of the Team Europe Initiative on Transboundary Water Management in Africa”.

On World Water Day, 22 March, the EIB will publish its new Water Sector Orientation. The document presents the Bank’s investment priorities covering ways to finance conventional infrastructure as well as innovative approaches, such as circular economy, nature-based solutions, and digitalisation. It highlights the types of investments which maximise the Bank’s impact, especially to achieve its climate and environmental objectives.

On average the European Investment Bank finances €3bn in water infrastructure every year

Ahead of the conference, EIB Vice-President Ambroise Fayolle said: “We need to fundamentally change the way we understand and value water. If we continue to mismanage this precious resource, we risk losing some of the important progress we have made on global development in the last decades. When we invest in water infrastructure, we lay the ground for health, food, gender equality, and even for enhanced peace and security. Water runs through everything we hold dear, not least when it comes to helping those on the frontline of climate change adapt to rising temperatures, drought and flooding.” 

To follow EIB activities at the UN Water Conference, visit our event page.

On average the European Investment Bank finances €3bn in water infrastructure every year. Around 30% of EIB water projects are carried out outside the EU, including in some of the world’s poorest and drought-stricken countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America or the Middle East. Projects financed alongside regional partners connect cities and villages to clean water and sanitation, enable flood resistant infrastructure and encourage communities to recycle their water.

The UN Water Conference, co-hosted by Tajikistan and the Netherlands, is taking place for the first time in half a century. It will bring together governments, intergovernmental organisations, international financial institutions, the scientific community, representatives from civil society and other stakeholders. The conference provides a unique opportunity to discuss water security and tackle the world’s many water-issues head-on. 

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