Investing in infrastructure for improved competitiveness, safety and environment


The EU has set ambitious climate objectives, including achieving climate neutrality by 2050 and fostering energy-efficient renovations.

The European energy network needs to undergo a profound transition to sustain the planned amounts of renewable energy. This requires massive investments into the construction of grids, storage and converters.

At the same time, Europe is also undergoing a digital transition. Therefore ,modern telecommunications infrastructure across Europe must remain an investment priority.

Europe’s transport network is far from complete and a large part of it is now deteriorating (e.g. collapse of bridges) due to a lack of maintenance and coming under increasing pressure due to a rise in traffic, creating economic losses. Extreme weather events linked to climate change also take a toll, making it necessary to adapt infrastructure to this context.

The construction sector will play a key role in helping the EU to meet its ambitious climate and mobility objectives. However, significant delays in the implementation of crucial infrastructure and residential projects continue to be observed across most EU Member States.


A top priority among decision-makers, at both national and the EU level, should be to continue investing in and accelerating the execution of infrastructure projects, with the aim of fostering the competitiveness of our economies and accelerating the implementation of the environmental goals.

The TEN-T Regulation and the Connecting Europe Facility Regulation should provide incentives, for instance through providing higher amounts of EU grants or lower EU loan interest rates, for construction projects built with a comparatively low carbon footprint.

Investment in infrastructure requires sustainable and increased funding by the EU budget or other sources of financing. An ambitious post-2027 European budget is essential if we are to meet the deadlines for completing the core network. Furthermore, it is essential to better take into consideration the socio-economic benefits and tax receipts arising from such investments.

A stronger focus should be put on the extension as well as on the maintenance of Europe’s transport network to ensure not only the safety of its users, but also the proper functioning of the single market. Good maintenance of infrastructure pays off, not only financially by avoiding replacements, but also environmentally by prolonging the lifecycle of infrastructure and avoiding emissions. To this end, the needs and costs related to maintenance throughout the life cycle of infrastructure must be taken into account right from the planning phase of infrastructure projects.

Targeted and increasing climate change mitigation investment is needed to make infrastructure resilient to the hazards of climate change.

A one size fits all approach places unreasonable expectations on countries and regions farther away from Europe’s centre. The provisions defining the TEN-T (Trans-European Transport Network) need to be adjusted to take into account the needs and possibilities of peripheral countries or regions.

As FIEC and EIC have stated in the framework of the ‘EU Ukraine Facility’, it should be stipulated in the ‘EU acquis communautaire’ that all key supplies and materials financed by EU funds and procured under the EU Procurement Directives should be open to nationals of and legal persons established in either the EU Member States, the EEA, in countries of the EU Neighbourhood Area, including Ukraine, or countries benefitting from pre-accession assistance. This would strengthen the green transition of the EU economy and ensure efficient implementation of EU funds for construction activities.