InvestEU: deal with Council on new programme to boost jobs and growth in the EU
- InvestEU acts as a launchpad for investments which otherwise would have been difficult to finance
- Increased accountability, stronger focus on climate protection
Parliament and Council reached a preliminary agreement on Wednesday on a new EU instrument to support investment and access to finance from 2021 to 2027.
The new InvestEU programme follows and replaces the current EFSI (European Fund for Strategic Investments), set up after the financial crisis.
During the negotiations with the member states, MEPs pushed for and managed to obtain:
- clearer and new objectives, such as increasing the EU employment rate, achieving the Paris Climate Agreement goals or economic, territorial and social cohesion;
- better climate protection: a target of “at least 55%” of the investment under the sustainable infrastructure policy window was set for climate and environment objectives;
- a Steering Board to ensure the right balance between policy and banking experience in governing the programme; an EP appointee will also sit on the committee;
- the remuneration of the EU guarantee may be modulated in situations where stressed financial market conditions would prevent the realisation of an operation or where necessary to facilitate the establishment of investment platforms or the funding of projects in sectors or areas experiencing a significant market failure or suboptimal investment situation;
- Innovative solutions such as the acquisition of a business or a participation in a business by employees.
“With InvestEU we are shaping the future of the EU towards more investments to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as well as local projects. Moreover, we strongly link this new tool with a strong incentive to support Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) projects, promoting culture and ensure ethical and sustainable finance”, said Roberto Gualtieri (S&D, IT), co-rapporteur and Chair of the Committee on Economic and Monetary affairs.
“InvestEU reinforces competitiveness and productivity in the EU. It will support SMEs, research and innovation, the social sector and public and private investment in infrastructures. The Parliament wants to mobilize 700 billion euros for 2021-2027, create quality jobs and help social, economic e territorial cohesion”, said José Manuel Fernandes (EPP, PT), co-rapporteur for the Committee on Budgets.
It is planned for plenary to vote in April on the partial agreement and close the first reading in view of the European elections in May. In the next legislature, MEPs will continue talks with member states on issues left open, in the context of upcoming negotiations on the next multiannual financial framework (MFF 2021-2027).
Despite numerous initiatives to remedy the situation, there is still a significant investment gap in the EU. The InvestEU programme (part of the MFF 2021-2027 package “EU budget for the future”) aims to address this problem.
It aims to bring together the various EU financial instruments currently available (among others: the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the Connecting Europe Facility instruments, specific facilities under the Competitiveness Of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (COSME) programme, as well as specific guarantees and facilities under the Employment and Social Innovation programme (EaSI)) in order to benefit from economies of scale, and expand the Juncker Plan’s model (i.e. using guarantees from the EU budget to bring in other investors).
InvestEU will consist of the InvestEU Fund, the InvestEU Advisory Hub and the InvestEU Portal (More information)