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Wednesday, 9 November 2022 - Brussels Provisional edition

REPowerEU chapters in recovery and resilience plans (debate)

  Costas Mavrides, on behalf of the S&D Group. – Mr President, the current energy crisis and the high inflation require urgent decisions. Tomorrow, the European Parliament is called upon to vote on this regulation, which allows Member States to amend their national recovery and resilience plans by including new reforms and investments in energy related projects financed by additional requests for grants and loans.

The urgency of the situation leaves no option but to proceed quickly to the negotiations with other EU institutions and deliver to our citizens. As the European Parliament, our proposal is to ensure that projects aim at tackling energy poverty for households and SMEs can benefit from this funding. This has been one of our group’s priorities.

We have also included a provision requiring mandatory consultations with social partners and other civil society stakeholders, as we have noticed the lack of proper consultation during the drafting of the national recovery and resilience plans. It is also important that we ensure that members are allowed to amend their plans due to the consequences of war inflation by including various measures such as social housing. We also support cross—border projects and include a reference for the EU to give particular consideration to remote, peripheral and isolated regions and islands which already experience additional constraints.

The RRF, with the REPowerEU chapter, is an important instrument for Member States to cope with the short-term effects of energy crises, safeguarding security of supply and accelerating the long-term transition towards a decarbonised energy system. However, this is not the end, and for certain this is not enough. We need more courageous decisions immediately by the Council and the Commission, such as a reform of EU economic and fiscal governance, EU fiscal capacity and common tools to respond to economic shocks on a European level, learning from experience. Because, after all, our job is to deliver to the EU citizens.

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