Friday, 19 October 2012

Cambridge MP Huppert Aids Push To Get Green Bank Full Borrowing Powers


MP Julian Huppert has helped to win assurances from the government that the Lib Dem-led Green Investment Bank will be able to borrow from the capital markets.

Julian backed an amendment to the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill aimed at clarifying the position so that the bank would be more than just a fund spending money allocated by the government

The amendment was proposed by former Energy and Climate Change Minister, Lib Dem Chris Huhne after a motion calling on the government to “expand the bank’s scale and remit as fast as possible” was backed at the Lib Dem autumn conference.

In response, ministers provided reassurance that the government would act to give the bank full borrowing powers.

Now Julian is hoping ministers will bring forward a government amendment when the Bill reaches the Lords which will clarify the position.

Julian said: “The Green Investment Bank has the potential to drive forward the green economy, helping to create new jobs and further new technologies. But it can only do that effectively if it has the powers of a proper bank to borrow and lend rather than being limited by the government.

“We need this commitment written in law so that this and future governments allow this bank to operate as it was intended. It has enormous potential to become a real asset giving green organisations the borrowing power to thrive and grow.”

The full wording of the amendment signed by Julian reads:
 Page 3, line 24 [Clause 4], at end add - 
 ‘(7) Subject to approval by the European Commission of the State aid notification concerning the establishment of the UK Green Investment Bank, it is the duty of the Secretary of State to provide the European Commission with State aid notification concerning the intention to allow the Bank to borrow, including borrowing from the capital markets. 
(8) The duty in subsection (7) must be fulfilled not later than 31 December 2013.