In the 12 months to December 2014, global investment in energy and infrastructure reached US$407 billion; a 7% decrease over the same period in 2013. For all of us based this side of the Atlantic, 2014 was a difficult year; volumes dropped by 14% to US$67.5 billon1 in Western Europe while bank appetite increased and the institutional investor crowd joined the party.
Despite the general improvement in the availability of funding in the post-sovereign European debt crisis period, budgets have continued to tighten and governments have lacked the ability or the desire to support further investment into the sector. Even when public finances have not been compromised, regulators and national authorities have remained conservative about their investment plans to avoid increasing consumer bills at a time when, in most European countries, disposable income remains marginally above the levels observed in 2007-08 on an inflation-adjusted basis.
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