The European Investment Bank is to provide €333m towards the construction and operation of a 216 MW offshore wind farm in the North Sea.

The Northwind project will be built 37 km off Ostend in Belgium and is expected to generate enough electricity for 230 000 households.

The overall cost of the wind farm is €900m and it is expected to be completed by mid-2014.

The bank announced its loan today and said that Northwind will have a “significant impact in terms of the EU’s and the EIB’s Climate Action agenda.

It added that the wind arm “will help Belgium to meet its national and EU targets for renewable energy generation and will also contribute to environmental and security of energy supply objectives”.

Pim Van Ballekom, European Investment Bank vice-president, said:  The EIB is pleased to play a part in these challenging projects contributing to climate action and to economic growth. By financing the Northwind project, the EIB is again demonstrating its capacity and support to mature offshore wind projects that are ready for immediate implementation.”

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