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Debates
Tuesday, 26 March 2019 - Strasbourg Revised edition

European Regional Development Fund and Cohesion Fund (debate)
MPphoto
 

  Derek Vaughan, rapporteur for the opinion of the Committee on Budgetary Control. – Mr President, I would also like to thank the rapporteur. The ERDF will remain one of the main investment tools for the European Union. Indeed, in the next MFF it will still account for about 25% of the budget. Therefore, the Committee on Budgetary Control will obviously be keen to ensure that the money is spent properly, effectively and efficiently. But we also recognise that it is an important fund, and therefore we would welcome most of the proposals put forward by the rapporteur, unlike maybe the Commission. I particularly wanted to welcome the initiative or the proposal to allocate a percentage of funds to rural areas for the first time, because we know in the past rural areas have sometimes felt left out from Cohesion Policy funding.

I also wanted to say that I am very disappointed that, possibly, in the future, Wales will not be able to benefit from Structural Funds. We’ve been a huge net beneficiary of Structural Funds, and it’s sad that we might not be able to benefit from them in the future. But I want to say that the ERDF is an important source of funding. Even if the UK does leave the European Union – and I hope it doesn’t – I want ERDF to continue to be successful and I would like this Parliament to continue to fight for the ERDF in the future.

 
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