European Investment Bank to offer loan for Thames Tideway Tunnel

The European Investment Bank has agreed to offer a loan of £700m for the £4.2bn Thames Tideway Tunnel, which is claimed to be the largest infrastructure project undertaken by the UK water industry.

This project will aid in addressing the issues relating to overflow of untreated sewage into the river over centre of the British capital.

The loan agreement is for 35 year long term Tideway is the new regulated company set up to design, build, commission and maintain the 25 km tunnel, which will directly control or intercept discharges from more than 30 combined sewer overflow points, stretching from Acton in the west to Stratford in the east.

European Investment Bank vice president Jonathan Taylor said: "The new GBP 700 million loan for Tideway represents the European Investment Bank's largest-ever water loan and the most significant support for UK infrastructure since Crossrail.

"This demonstrates the EIB's strong commitment as the largest source of financing for long-term investment in UK water infrastructure since before privatisation and builds on more than GBP 2 billion of support for investment to improve London's water and waste water infrastructure since 1989.

"We are pleased to support the construction of the Thames Tideway Tunnel, a world-class engineering scheme, delivering infrastructure vital to clean up the Thames."

Tideway chief financial officer Mark Corben said: "The EIB's backing for Tideway is an important vote of confidence in us as a company, as we move into the construction phase. This loan covers a significant proportion of the financing we need to raise.

"The innovative, index-linked structure enables us to lock-in financing costs, whilst also matching our funding requirements and profiling debt service, in line with the expected growth in our asset base."