Bank established as an enduring institution as key legislation receives Royal Assent

Bank established as an enduring institution as key legislation receives Royal Assent

24 March 2023

The UK Infrastructure Bank Act has been passed into law - a significant milestone for the Bank as it is set up in legislation as a permanent institution for the whole of the UK.

The new Act places the Bank on a statutory footing, confirming its long-term future and recognising its important role in helping to address climate change and boost regional and local growth.

The UK Infrastructure Bank opened its headquarters in Leeds in June 2021. Since its launch, it has announced 12 deals in total, investing approximately £1.2 billion and unlocking over £5 billion in private capital and over 4,500 jobs (created and supported). 

The Bank has also appointed a full Board and Executive team and continues to grow its capabilities. It will eventually employ around 280 permanent staff, with the majority based in Leeds, and is working to accelerate financing for ambitious infrastructure projects, support innovative green technologies, and boost investment across the UK. 

Reflecting the Bank’s urgent mission, its two core objectives have now been enshrined in law, providing potential partners and the market with confidence in the Bank’s long-term commitment to invest in infrastructure. 

As a result of the new Act, ‘infrastructure’ will also be legally defined as including nature-based, as well as technological, solutions. The Bank recognises the importance of natural capital to delivering on its mission and recently it published a paper which set out its initial thinking on how it might invest in nature-based solutions.

The Bank has already invested broadly across its mandate and in locations around the UK. For example, last week it announced its first deal in the water sector. This was also the Bank’s first deal aimed at improving climate resilience, investing £50 million alongside private sector partners to finance the Havant Thicket Winter Storage Reservoir, managed by Portsmouth Water.

Other activities announced to date include:

  • Financing the first undersea energy link between the UK and Germany, to support the UK’s drive for energy security, supporting the £2.4 billion NeuConnect project, which will construct an undersea electricity highway known as an interconnector, enabling the exchange of surplus energy from renewable sources such as solar and wind.
  • Committing £250 million as a cornerstone investor in the NextPower UK ESG (NPUK ESG) fund, which aims to double the amount of subsidy-free solar power across the UK. 
  • Partnering with Bristol, Greater Manchester, and West Yorkshire to support projects at the forefront of climate change and regional growth agenda, covering the electrification of buses, mass transit, and place-based, low-carbon energy infrastructure.

In addition, the Bank has been building out its local authority advisory function, an integral part of its offering. The Bank lends directly to Local Authorities, who are at the frontline of tackling climate change, to support their work developing critical projects and bringing investment into areas across the UK in the process. Following Royal Assent, the Bank will have the power to lend directly to local authorities across the UK, including, for the first time to local authorities in Northern Ireland.

Commenting on the Bill receiving Royal Assent, John Flint, CEO of the UK Infrastructure Bank, said:

"This is another major step forward in our development, as it cements our position as an enduring organisation. And that, in turn, means we can move forward with confidence as we work with our partners in the public and private sector to deliver our critical mission of tackling climate change and driving up regional and local economic growth."

Andrew Griffith MP, Economic Secretary to the Treasury said:

"The UK Infrastructure Bank has already announced billions of pounds of vital investment as well as creating and supporting over 4,500 jobs UK wide.

"We have a laser focus on growing the economy and delivering high skilled, well paid jobs, as we turbo charge this country’s clean energy revolution, creating opportunity in every region of the UK."

Find out more information on the Bill and what the measures will achieve on