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EU policies – Delivering for citizens: Energy supply and security

28-06-2019

Energy policy is a competence shared between the EU and its Member States. Whereas the EU has responsibility under the Treaties to ensure security of supply, Member States are responsible for determining the structure of their energy supply and their choice of energy sources. EU legislation on security of supply focuses on natural gas and electricity markets, and is closely related to other EU objectives: consolidating a single energy market, improving energy efficiency, and promoting renewable energy ...

Energy policy is a competence shared between the EU and its Member States. Whereas the EU has responsibility under the Treaties to ensure security of supply, Member States are responsible for determining the structure of their energy supply and their choice of energy sources. EU legislation on security of supply focuses on natural gas and electricity markets, and is closely related to other EU objectives: consolidating a single energy market, improving energy efficiency, and promoting renewable energy sources to decarbonise the economy and meet the Paris Agreement goals. The 2014-2019 legislature saw numerous initiatives in connection with security of supply. The EU institutions reached agreement on a revised regulation on security of gas supply, a revised regulation on security of electricity supply, a revised decision on intergovernmental agreements in the energy field, a targeted revision of the gas directive to apply its key provisions to pipelines with third countries, and also new targets for energy efficiency and renewables by 2030. Parliament also adopted several own-initiative resolutions in the energy field, including one on the new EU strategy on liquefied natural gas and gas storage, which is key to gas supply security. Meanwhile, EU projects of common interest (PCIs) finance energy infrastructure that improves interconnection and supports security of supply. There is growing expectation among EU citizens that the EU will step up its involvement in energy supply and security. Whereas this view was shared by just over half of EU citizens in 2016 (52 %), it is now expressed by roughly two thirds (65 %). The EU will retain a key role in monitoring security of supply throughout the energy transition from the old system of centralised generation dominated by fossil fuels in national markets, towards a new system characterised by a high share of renewables, more localised production and cross-border markets. However, the EU would need to use a special legislative procedure if it wanted to intervene directly in determining the energy supply of its Member States. This procedure requires decision-making by unanimity in Council and only a consultative role for the Parliament. This is an update of an earlier briefing issued in advance of the 2019 European elections.

EU-funded large-scale infrastructure: deficient project preparation and procurement processes?

28-09-2018

This study aims to develop a better understanding of the regulatory framework and experience with the preparation and procurement of large-scale infrastructure projects (over EUR 50 million) under the European Regional Development Fund, the Cohesion Fund, the European Fund for Strategic Investments, and the Connecting Europe Facility. The study recommends (i) collecting data on Member State capacities for preparing projects and conducting public procurement; (ii) collecting data on the performance ...

This study aims to develop a better understanding of the regulatory framework and experience with the preparation and procurement of large-scale infrastructure projects (over EUR 50 million) under the European Regional Development Fund, the Cohesion Fund, the European Fund for Strategic Investments, and the Connecting Europe Facility. The study recommends (i) collecting data on Member State capacities for preparing projects and conducting public procurement; (ii) collecting data on the performance of the recent European Commission initiatives - voluntary ex-ante assessment of large-scale infrastructure (2017) the professionalisation of public procurement (2017) and additional guidance on procurement of European Union-funded large-scale infrastructure (2018); (iii) enhancing the consistency of data in the procurement database ‘Tenders Electronic Daily’; (iv) and strengthening the involvement of relevant stakeholders in the preparation and procurement of large-scale infrastructure projects.

Ulkopuolinen laatija

José Papí, Margarita Sanz, Roderick Ackermann, Roland Blomeyer

STUDY IN FOCUS - SKILLS DEVELOPMENT: THE POTENTIAL OF THE EUROPEAN FUND FOR STRATEGIC INVESTMENTS

16-08-2018

This briefing summarises key results from a comprehensive study prepared at reqest of the Employment and Social Affairs Committee. It includes an action plan taking account of the Commission proposal for the new programme InvestEU.

This briefing summarises key results from a comprehensive study prepared at reqest of the Employment and Social Affairs Committee. It includes an action plan taking account of the Commission proposal for the new programme InvestEU.

SKILLS DEVELOPMENT: THE POTENTIAL OF THE EUROPEAN FUND FOR STRATEGIC INVESTMENTS

16-07-2018

This study investigates the potential of using the European Fund for Strategic Investment (EFSI) to support skills development and Active Labour Market Policies (ALMP). It analyses the development of EFSI to date and explores projects in four EU Member States with funding models that could finance and scale up investments in skills development using EFSI financing in the future. The study concludes that whilst there is potential to intensify the use of EFSI and its successor InvestEU to support these ...

This study investigates the potential of using the European Fund for Strategic Investment (EFSI) to support skills development and Active Labour Market Policies (ALMP). It analyses the development of EFSI to date and explores projects in four EU Member States with funding models that could finance and scale up investments in skills development using EFSI financing in the future. The study concludes that whilst there is potential to intensify the use of EFSI and its successor InvestEU to support these areas, a number of challenges related to the typical nature of investments and the national/local capacity to develop and structure investment projects in human capital would have to be overcome.

Ulkopuolinen laatija

Jan Franke et al.

European Investment Bank: 2016 financial report

25-04-2018

During the May I plenary session, the European Parliament is expected to discuss the financial report of the European Investment Bank (EIB) for the year 2016. The increasing importance of the EIB, both in budgetary terms and in its varied funding contributions in different areas of activity, calls for high level of transparency and accountability. Although the European Parliament's Committee on Budgetary Control (CONT) acknowledges some progress in this regard, it considers there is still room for ...

During the May I plenary session, the European Parliament is expected to discuss the financial report of the European Investment Bank (EIB) for the year 2016. The increasing importance of the EIB, both in budgetary terms and in its varied funding contributions in different areas of activity, calls for high level of transparency and accountability. Although the European Parliament's Committee on Budgetary Control (CONT) acknowledges some progress in this regard, it considers there is still room for improvement.

Promoting sustainable transport and removing bottlenecks in key network infrastructure

25-04-2018

Ahead of the Commission’s forthcoming proposals on the new Multiannual Financial Framework, which are expected in May 2018, the May I plenary session is expected to discuss an own-initiative report which assesses the implementation of cohesion policy and the thematic objective of promoting sustainable transport and removing bottlenecks in key network infrastructure, including recommendations for the post-2020 period.

Ahead of the Commission’s forthcoming proposals on the new Multiannual Financial Framework, which are expected in May 2018, the May I plenary session is expected to discuss an own-initiative report which assesses the implementation of cohesion policy and the thematic objective of promoting sustainable transport and removing bottlenecks in key network infrastructure, including recommendations for the post-2020 period.

Challenges for EU cohesion policy: Issues in the forthcoming post-2020 reform

16-02-2018

The departure of the United Kingdom from the EU will have a significant impact on the EU budget. The next Multiannual Financial Framework, to be presented in May 2018, could make fewer resources available for cohesion policy in the post-2020 period. At this critical juncture, the discussion amongst policy-makers on the future priorities of cohesion policy is now heating up. Among the topics widely debated are the need to make cohesion funds simpler and more flexible for beneficiaries to use, while ...

The departure of the United Kingdom from the EU will have a significant impact on the EU budget. The next Multiannual Financial Framework, to be presented in May 2018, could make fewer resources available for cohesion policy in the post-2020 period. At this critical juncture, the discussion amongst policy-makers on the future priorities of cohesion policy is now heating up. Among the topics widely debated are the need to make cohesion funds simpler and more flexible for beneficiaries to use, while also strengthening the contribution of cohesion policy to the EU's economic governance and increasing its added value. One point of the debate relates to the way cohesion policy addresses new or growing challenges such as migration, environment and digitalisation. Yet another includes finding the most efficient form of support for beneficiaries: should it be grants, financial instruments, or possibly a mix of all of these? Other specific matters raised relate to the urban dimension in cohesion policy and the impact that the policy can have upon growth, jobs and innovation in rural areas, regions lagging behind, as well as regions with special geographical characteristics. Last but not least, the relationship between cohesion policy and the European Fund for Strategic Investment is much debated. The European Commission (EC) has published a number of white papers on the future of the EU that provide further ideas for reflection on the priorities of the Union. These reflections also have repercussions for cohesion policy. In addition, the 7th EC Report on Economic, Social and Territorial Cohesion also provides insights into the direction cohesion policy is likely to take. This briefing is an update of an earlier edition, published in September 2017, PE 608.722.

European Fund for Strategic Investments – EFSI 2.0

15-02-2018

On 14 September 2016, the Commission proposed an extension of the duration of the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) until end-2020, and the introduction of technical enhancements for that fund and the European Investment Advisory Hub. Under the new regulation, (EFSI 2.0), steps are taken to increase support for small-scale projects; Parliament can send a (non-voting) expert to EFSI’s steering board, and EFSI’s scoreboard will be publicly available after a project is signed. The increase ...

On 14 September 2016, the Commission proposed an extension of the duration of the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) until end-2020, and the introduction of technical enhancements for that fund and the European Investment Advisory Hub. Under the new regulation, (EFSI 2.0), steps are taken to increase support for small-scale projects; Parliament can send a (non-voting) expert to EFSI’s steering board, and EFSI’s scoreboard will be publicly available after a project is signed. The increase in the financial allocation needed to deliver the higher investment targeted will come from an increase in the EU budget guarantee from €16 billion to €26 billion, and an increase in the EIB contribution from €5 billion to €7.5 billion. However, the provisioning rate for the guarantee is reduced to 35 %, giving a total contribution from the EU budget of €9.1 billion, compared to an initial contribution of €8 billion. Parliament managed to reduce the share of this increased contribution financed via redeployments from the Connecting Europe Facility programme, by instead drawing more heavily on EFSI-assigned revenues and investment reflows. The agreed text was adopted on 12 December 2017.

Plenary round-up – Strasbourg, December 2017

15-12-2017

The December session highlights were the pre-European Council debate, including on the state of play of 'Brexit' negotiations, as well as the debate on foreign, security and defence policy, with a statement from Federica Mogherini on PESCO. Members also debated US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital, and the PANA Committee of Inquiry report. Parliament adopted, inter alia, the 'Omnibus' regulation for agriculture, extension of EFSI, and a regulation on aviation emissions.

The December session highlights were the pre-European Council debate, including on the state of play of 'Brexit' negotiations, as well as the debate on foreign, security and defence policy, with a statement from Federica Mogherini on PESCO. Members also debated US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital, and the PANA Committee of Inquiry report. Parliament adopted, inter alia, the 'Omnibus' regulation for agriculture, extension of EFSI, and a regulation on aviation emissions.

Statute for Social and Solidarity-based Enterprises

06-12-2017

Social enterprises combine societal goals with entrepreneurial spirit. These organisations focus on achieving wider social, environmental or community objectives. There is currently no specific European legal framework to help social enterprises to benefit from the internal market. Against this background, this European added value assessment identifies the challenges in the existing national legal frameworks regarding social enterprises. It argues that action at EU level would generate economic ...

Social enterprises combine societal goals with entrepreneurial spirit. These organisations focus on achieving wider social, environmental or community objectives. There is currently no specific European legal framework to help social enterprises to benefit from the internal market. Against this background, this European added value assessment identifies the challenges in the existing national legal frameworks regarding social enterprises. It argues that action at EU level would generate economic and social added value. Moreover, it outlines potential legislative measures that could be taken at EU level, and that could generate European added value through simplification and a coordinated approach in this area.

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