EIB provide EUR 60 million towards development of the NUI Galway campus
OREANDA-NEWS. The European Investment Bank will provide EUR 60 million towards development of the NUI Galway campus. The first ever loan to the university from Europe’s long-term lending institution, agreed in Galway earlier today, will finance construction of campus developments including new student residences and a new building for the College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences.
At the signing, Dr Jim Browne, President of NUI Galway said: “The University is nearing the conclusion of a ten year capital development plan, which has transformed our campus. While philanthropic and State funding have enabled much of this expansion, the support from EIB will assist in the completion of our new Human Biology Building, which will transform the learning environment for our health science students, as well as the development of new campus student accommodation. Construction of new residences for 430 students is well underway, and at a time when there are such significant issues nationally with supply of housing, we are looking forward to having this increased capacity during the next academic year.”
“Future generations of students will benefit from the transformation of Galway’s already impressive campus made possible by the EUR 60 million EIB financing agreed today. Irish universities are recognised around the world for both their academic and research renown, and enjoyable student experience. The European Investment Bank is committed to ensuring that world-class third level institutions across Ireland can build on these strengths in the years ahead. This follows successful cooperation between the EIB and all Irish universities and EUR 1.2 billion support for Irish education investment in recent years.” said Andrew McDowell, European Investment Bank Vice President.
Following agreement for the new financing for NUI Galway the EIB will have supported campus investment at all seven members of the Irish Universities Association. Over the last decade the EIB has provided EUR 1.2 billion for education investment across Ireland, including EUR 675 million for investment in third level education in the country.
The first ever EIB loan to the university was formally agreed in Galway earlier today by Dr Jim Browne, President of NUI Galway and Andrew McDowell, Vice-President of the European Investment Bank.
“I have set the ambition to make Ireland’s Education and Training Service the best in Europe within a decade. Investment from the European Investment Bank has made a significant contribution towards advancing us to this goal. State of the art facilities are key to being the best and in recent years, new schools and universities in Cork, Limerick, Maynooth and Dublin have been transformed as a direct result of the EIB’s commitment to Ireland. Less than three years ago the EIB set out to ensure that all Irish universities could benefit and now Ireland is the only country in Europe where all universities have benefited from EIB backed investment. Today’s meeting with the Irish Universities Association will set out how to ensure that Irish education continues to benefit from EIB’s technical experience and financial expertise.” said Richard Bruton, Minister for Education and Skills
“The new EUR 60 million EIB loan to NUI Galway will ensure that the university continues to lead research across a range of disciplines including medtech. Strengthened EIB backing for Irish universities in recent years is ensuring that students, researcher and staff at Irish universities are already benefiting from better facilities and the latest technology across the country. The EIB’s firm commitment to support future investment is a clear vote of confidence in world class Irish universities.” said Mary Mitchell O'Connor, Minister of State for Higher Education.
During the visit the EIB delegation saw at first-hand how ongoing modernisation and new construction was transforming research, education and recreation at the university.
The new financing agreement between NUI Galway and the European Investment Bank marks the successful completion of a dedicated initiative to support capital investment at Irish universities launched in October 2015 and ensure that all Irish universities could benefit from low-cost, long-term EIB financing.
In recent years the EIB has financed transformational investment to improve teaching, research and student facilities at Trinity, UCD, DCU, University College Cork, Maynooth University and the University of Limerick.
The new financing was formally signed ahead of a briefing for the Presidents of the seven Irish universities outlining new opportunities to broaden EIB Group support possible in the years ahead senior representatives of the European Investment bank and European Investment Fund.
This includes new financing of campus investment, support for urban development and possible provision of new loans to facilitate international mobility of postgraduate students under the Erasmus Plus initiative already rolled out in other EU countries.