The operation is claimed by EIB to be guaranteed by the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI). The first tranche €220 has been signed by EIB vice president Román Escolano and the Águas de Portugal president and CEO João Nuno Mendes.

With this loan, improvements in quality, efficiency and sustainability of water and wastewater services in Portugal can be realised. The plan will include construction and renovation of related infrastructure facilities throughout the country.

By upgrading the water infrastructure in the country, jobs to the tune of 7400 are also expected to be created. The investment is also expected to bring lasting environmental benefits and can improve ecological quality of surface and groundwater resources.

The money will be used in Portugal over the next four years to cover over 1,000 improvement programmes in water supply networks.

While more than 8 million Portuguese are expected to benefit from improved water facilities, about 6 million people from improved wastewater services.

The remaining €200m are expected to be provided through an alternative structure, as the final terms for the second tranche have still to be decided.

EIB vice president Román Escolano said: “We are very pleased to support a project that will directly benefit Portuguese citizens by increasing the efficiency and reliability of water services in Portugal. Furthermore, many of the investments implemented thanks to this agreement will be carried out in municipalities in cohesion areas.

“Moreover, the positive impact of this EIB funding is not only economic and social but also environmental: promoting more efficient use of water resources strongly contributes to climate action, a priority of the EU bank.”

Image: EIB vice president R. Escolano and Aguas CEO J. Mendes. Photo: Courtesy of European Investment Bank.