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The group of experts convened for the first time to resolve financing shortfalls in social infrastructure
Cassa depositi e prestiti on Monday took part in the first plenary meeting of the High-Level Task Force on Social Infrastructure (HLTF), created to identify ways to promote financing for so-called social infrastructure.
Launched by the European Association of Long-Term Investors (ELTI), under the umbrella and direct participation of the European Commission and the European Investment Bank, HLTF convened in Brussels under the chairmanship of Romano Prodi and former French Minister for Economics, Finance and Industry Christian Sautter. Cdp has a leading role within the Association in the activities of the HLTF.
More than 20 experts on the HLTF will review ways to attract investors and fill the financing gap that is amongst the most important factors prejudicing the capacity for sustainable growth and employment across the EU. A report will be presented to European Commission Vice-President Jurki Katainen at the end of 2017 with recommendations on how to relaunch social infrastructure financing in the European Union.
Cdp is historically active in Italian social infrastructure financing projects such as social and affordable housing and schools. Representing Cdp on the HTLF are Antonella Baldino, and Edoardo Reviglio, the special rapporteur who will write the final report.
Infrastructure is essential to economic productivity, the functioning of society, and economic growth. Along with traditional investment projects in energy, transport and telecoms (largely, “economic” infrastructure), there is a significant need to emphasize the importance of social infrastructure investment, in sectors including health, education, affordable housing, and infrastructure for migrants. What they have in common are peculiarities, including their “public good” component, lack of readily marketable output and their generally weaker experience in terms of attracting private capital.
During a lifespan of 10-12 months, the HLTF comprises expertise in financial instruments, public service issues, innovative social investment, political insight, national and local governance with representation of institutional investors, the public sector, the EU Commission and EIB. It is responsible for the strategy and guidance of the exercise and the ultimate report.
The HLTF is promoted by the European Association of Long-Term Investors (composed of Cdp and other EU public financial institutions), the European Commission, the European Investment Bank and Integrate, a Maastricht-based think tank that focuses on what needs to be done practically in the EU in order to take longer-term investment in social sectors.