The European Commission’s Connecting Europe Facility is expected to formally adopt a proposal this week to provide £1.2bn of funding for construction work on the Brenner Base Tunnel (BBT) from 2015 to 2020.
According to BBT, this funding will meet 50% of the costs of the exploratory tunnel and 40% of the costs for the main tunnels over the next five years.
The EU has said that the Brenner Base Tunnel, along with the Fehmarn link between Denmark and Germany, is the most important north-south link in Europe.
More than 700 other projects applied for £25.5bn of funding but only £9.3bn was allocated to projects that were considered to have a benefit to Europe as a whole.
“I am very pleased that following constructive discussions in the CEF coordination committee, the member states endorsed our proposal for the largest investment plan ever made by the EU in the transport area,” said EU commissioner for transport Violeta Bulc. “The 276 projects we selected will contribute to the creation of jobs and will boost growth and competitiveness in Europe. I am also delighted to see that many will implement horizontal priorities such as the digitalisation of transport or the market uptake of alternative fuels.”
Other projects that are set to benefit under the funding include the Fehmarn Link, Austria’s Koralm tunnel and the Mont Ceris base tunnel on the Turin to Lyon rail link.