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Just Transition Fund

13-10-2020

The EU aims to cut greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55 % by 2030 and achieve climate neutrality by 2050. This will require a socio-economic transformation in regions relying on fossil fuels and high-emission industries. As part of the European Green Deal, on 14 January 2020, the European Commission adopted a proposal for a regulation to create the Just Transition Fund, aimed at supporting EU regions most affected by the transition to a low carbon economy. In the context of recovery from the coronavirus ...

The EU aims to cut greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55 % by 2030 and achieve climate neutrality by 2050. This will require a socio-economic transformation in regions relying on fossil fuels and high-emission industries. As part of the European Green Deal, on 14 January 2020, the European Commission adopted a proposal for a regulation to create the Just Transition Fund, aimed at supporting EU regions most affected by the transition to a low carbon economy. In the context of recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, an amended proposal on the Just Transition Fund (JTF) was published on 28 May 2020, increasingly the previously proposed JTF budget from €7.5 to €40 billion (in 2018 prices, with €10 billion under the core EU budget and €30 billion from Next Generation EU). The European Council cut the core budget part to €7.5 billion and Next Generation EU part to €10 billion in July 2020, while the European Parliament proposed an increase of the core budget resources to over €25 billion in September 2020. Funding will be available to all Member States, while focusing on regions with the biggest transition challenges. The proposed budget for the Just Transition Fund is to be complemented with resources from cohesion policy funds and national co financing. The Fund will be part of a Just Transition Mechanism, which also includes resources under InvestEU and a public-sector loan facility. The Commission expects total funding mobilised under the mechanism to reach at least €150 billion. In the European Parliament, the file has been entrusted to the Committee on Regional Development (REGI). The REGI committee voted on its report on 6 July, and the Parliament subsequently adopted its amendments on 17 September 2020, fixing its position for trilogue negotiations. Third edition. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

Just Transition Fund

11-09-2020

The EU’s ambition to achieve climate neutrality will require a transformation in those regions relying on fossil fuels and high-emission industries. The Just Transition Fund of €17.5 billion, complementing the existing cohesion policy funds, will provide support to address the social, economic and environmental impacts of the transition in the most affected territories. The European Parliament is expected to vote during the September plenary session on its legislative resolution outlining the Parliament ...

The EU’s ambition to achieve climate neutrality will require a transformation in those regions relying on fossil fuels and high-emission industries. The Just Transition Fund of €17.5 billion, complementing the existing cohesion policy funds, will provide support to address the social, economic and environmental impacts of the transition in the most affected territories. The European Parliament is expected to vote during the September plenary session on its legislative resolution outlining the Parliament’s first-reading position on the proposed regulation, and refer the file back to the Committee on Regional Development (REGI) for interinstitutional negotiations.

European Regional Development Fund and Cohesion Fund 2021-2027

30-01-2020

In the context of the upcoming Multiannual Financial Framework for 2021-2027, the European Commission published a proposal for a regulation on the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the Cohesion Fund (CF) on 29 May 2018. The new single regulation on the ERDF and CF (previously covered by two separate regulations) identifies the specific objectives and scope of support for both funds, including non-eligible activities. The majority of ERDF funding (65 % to 85 %) will focus on smart growth ...

In the context of the upcoming Multiannual Financial Framework for 2021-2027, the European Commission published a proposal for a regulation on the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the Cohesion Fund (CF) on 29 May 2018. The new single regulation on the ERDF and CF (previously covered by two separate regulations) identifies the specific objectives and scope of support for both funds, including non-eligible activities. The majority of ERDF funding (65 % to 85 %) will focus on smart growth and the green economy, while the fund will also support other activities such as connectivity, social issues and local development. The CF will continue to focus predominantly on environmental and transport infrastructure. Special provisions have been proposed for territories such as urban areas and outermost regions. The indicator framework for monitoring progress will include new common results indicators. In the European Parliament, the file was allocated to the Committee on Regional Development, and on 27 March 2019 the Parliament adopted a legislative resolution in plenary constituting its first-reading position. The proposal is currently at trilogue stage with a view to an early second-reading agreement. Third edition. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

Just transition in EU regions

28-01-2020

The EU plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50 % by 2030, and to achieve climate neutrality by 2050. This will require a socio-economic transformation in regions relying on fossil fuels and carbon-intensive industries. As part of the European Green Deal, the new Commission has announced a 'Just Transition Mechanism' of €100 billion to support the territories most affected by the transition towards climate neutrality.

The EU plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50 % by 2030, and to achieve climate neutrality by 2050. This will require a socio-economic transformation in regions relying on fossil fuels and carbon-intensive industries. As part of the European Green Deal, the new Commission has announced a 'Just Transition Mechanism' of €100 billion to support the territories most affected by the transition towards climate neutrality.

Better communication for cohesion policy

05-11-2019

Cohesion policy is a major EU investment tool aimed at reducing regional disparities and achieving economic, social and territorial cohesion. It delivers a wide range of results in areas such as new infrastructure, training, job creation, support for small businesses and environmental protection. Communication is key when it comes to making the public aware of existing funding opportunities and informing them of the results of cohesion policy investments. It can also affect public perception of the ...

Cohesion policy is a major EU investment tool aimed at reducing regional disparities and achieving economic, social and territorial cohesion. It delivers a wide range of results in areas such as new infrastructure, training, job creation, support for small businesses and environmental protection. Communication is key when it comes to making the public aware of existing funding opportunities and informing them of the results of cohesion policy investments. It can also affect public perception of the EU and raise awareness of the positive impact of EU support on people's everyday lives. Improving the visibility of cohesion policy is therefore a salient issue for the EU. Communication measures range from requirements for fund managers and beneficiaries on the basis of EU legislation to more informal initiatives such as information campaigns, events and web portals aimed at publicising the policy's achievements. In the framework of multi-level governance, communication activities bring together a wide variety of actors including EU institutions, Member States, regional and local authorities and members of civil society. The ongoing negotiations on the new multiannual financial framework for 2021 to 2027, including new regulations on cohesion policy, and the upcoming conclusion of the 2014-2020 programming period provide a good opportunity for reflection on the issue of cohesion policy communication. This briefing updates an earlier edition, of March 2019. It was originally produced at the request of a member of the European Committee of the Regions, in the framework of the Cooperation Agreement between the Parliament and the Committee.

Apoyo de la UE a las regiones carboníferas

03-10-2019

La UE se ha comprometido a reducir las emisiones de gases de efecto invernadero en un 40 % antes de 2030 y en al menos un 80 % para 2050. Esto requerirá una transición de la dependencia de los combustibles fósiles a las fuentes de energía renovables y, en particular, una reducción de la producción de electricidad a partir del carbón. Si bien la producción y el consumo de carbón en la UE han ido disminuyendo de manera constante, el carbón sigue aportando aproximadamente una cuarta parte de la producción ...

La UE se ha comprometido a reducir las emisiones de gases de efecto invernadero en un 40 % antes de 2030 y en al menos un 80 % para 2050. Esto requerirá una transición de la dependencia de los combustibles fósiles a las fuentes de energía renovables y, en particular, una reducción de la producción de electricidad a partir del carbón. Si bien la producción y el consumo de carbón en la UE han ido disminuyendo de manera constante, el carbón sigue aportando aproximadamente una cuarta parte de la producción de electricidad de la UE. Se extrae carbón en 12 Estados miembros y las centrales eléctricas de carbón operan en 21 Estados miembros. El sector europeo del carbón emplea a 238 000 personas en actividades directamente asociadas, como las minas y las centrales eléctricas de carbón. Se calcula que en 2030 podrían desaparecer 160 000 puestos de trabajo. Se prevén nuevas pérdidas de puestos de trabajo en las actividades indirectas a lo largo de la cadena de valor, por ejemplo generación de electricidad, suministro de equipos, servicios, investigación y desarrollo. Es probable que los efectos de la eliminación progresiva del carbón también se dejen sentir en los sectores del hierro y el acero, la fabricación de equipos de minería y las terminales de carbón. La transición hacia una economía hipocarbónica requerirá, por tanto, cambios estructurales en las regiones productoras de carbón. Las soluciones propuestas incluyen ayudar a los trabajadores a reciclar y apoyar su búsqueda de nuevos empleos, promover la diversificación de las economías locales, modernizar los sistemas de energía y de generación de electricidad, desarrollar el sector de las energías renovables y rehabilitar las tierras mineras, por ejemplo transformando antiguas minas para uso de energías renovables o creando centros de patrimonio industrial. La UE ofrece una variedad de financiación que puede utilizarse para mitigar las consecuencias socioeconómicas para las regiones del carboníferas. Los programas de energía y adaptación al clima, junto con las oportunidades de financiación de la investigación y la política de cohesión, ofrecen apoyo financiero, mientras que también se dispone de asistencia técnica adicional. La Plataforma de la Comisión Europea para las Cuencas Mineras en Transición ayuda a las regiones a preparar y llevar a cabo actividades de transición. Dado que la UE está negociando actualmente su marco presupuestario para después de 2020, el Parlamento Europeo y el Comité Europeo de las Regiones piden medidas específicas y fuentes de financiación a medida para ofrecer apoyo para facilitar la transición en las regiones carboníferas. La presidenta electa de la Comisión ha anunciado la creación de un fondo de transición justa como parte del Pacto Verde Europeo, y cabe esperar que se presenten nuevas propuestas legislativas en una fase temprana de su mandato.

Instrumentos financieros en la política de cohesión

30-09-2019

El uso de instrumentos financieros en la política de cohesión, considerado un método eficiente en materia de recursos para la utilización de los fondos públicos, está cada vez más extendido. Los instrumentos financieros ofrecen apoyo a la inversión en forma de préstamos, garantías, capital y otros mecanismos de reparto del riesgo. En el período de programación 2014-2020, los instrumentos financieros pueden ejecutarse en todos los ámbitos temáticos y fondos que abarca la política de cohesión, y combinarse ...

El uso de instrumentos financieros en la política de cohesión, considerado un método eficiente en materia de recursos para la utilización de los fondos públicos, está cada vez más extendido. Los instrumentos financieros ofrecen apoyo a la inversión en forma de préstamos, garantías, capital y otros mecanismos de reparto del riesgo. En el período de programación 2014-2020, los instrumentos financieros pueden ejecutarse en todos los ámbitos temáticos y fondos que abarca la política de cohesión, y combinarse con subvenciones. Está previsto que los importes asignados se dupliquen con respecto al período anterior. Las conclusiones que hasta ahora se han extraído de la ejecución de los instrumentos financieros revelan que dichos instrumentos ofrecen ventajas y plantean desafíos. Su carácter renovable puede aumentar la eficiencia y la sostenibilidad de los fondos públicos a largo plazo. La exigencia de reembolso puede estimular un mejor rendimiento y una mayor calidad de los proyectos de inversión. Los instrumentos financieros pueden mejorar el acceso a la financiación, al centrarse en proyectos viables desde el punto de vista económico que no han podido obtener financiación suficiente de las fuentes existentes en el mercado. Sin embargo, también pueden entrañar costes y tasas de gestión elevados, así como procedimientos complejos de puesta en marcha. Aunque los instrumentos financieros pueden ser un mecanismo provechoso para optimizar la utilización del presupuesto de cohesión, en algunos casos las subvenciones pueden resultar más eficaces. También es importante tener presente que el propósito fundamental de los instrumentos financieros es apoyar los objetivos de la política de cohesión, y no solo generar rentabilidad financiera. Las nuevas propuestas legislativas sobre el marco de la política de cohesión posterior a 2020 han tenido en cuenta estas consideraciones, y han simplificado el uso de los instrumentos financieros. El presente documento es una edición actualizada de un briefing de 2016.

Regional inequalities in the EU

17-05-2019

The issue of inequality has gained increasing importance in the public and political agenda in the aftermath of the financial and economic crisis, and in the context of political movements representing the 'places left behind'. Inequality may relate to income and wealth, but also to a variety of aspects such as access to basic services, education and infrastructure. In the context of regional disparities, it may also refer to differing levels of socio-economic development. Common inequality measures ...

The issue of inequality has gained increasing importance in the public and political agenda in the aftermath of the financial and economic crisis, and in the context of political movements representing the 'places left behind'. Inequality may relate to income and wealth, but also to a variety of aspects such as access to basic services, education and infrastructure. In the context of regional disparities, it may also refer to differing levels of socio-economic development. Common inequality measures have revealed that, while regional disparities have been decreasing when considering the EU as a whole, they have been increasing within some countries. A number of persistently low-growth regions exist in southern Europe, as do many low-income regions in eastern Europe. Every Member State has a number of 'inner peripheries', which are habitually located in post-industrial or rural areas and often characterised by high levels of unemployment, poor infrastructure, lack of skilled workforce and hampered accessibility. Strengthening social, economic and territorial cohesion, and reducing regional disparities is the main goal of EU cohesion policy. As a major EU tool to address regional inequalities, this policy provides a wide range of support for businesses and activities in areas such as research, environment, transport, employment, social inclusion, education and institutional capacity-building. Such support is crucial for addressing the underlying problems of many lagging regions, helping them create better living conditions, retain and attract talent, encourage investment, improve productivity and develop regional innovation systems. Together with economic governance frameworks and EU support for structural reform, EU cohesion policy can play an important role in reducing inequality, in a comprehensive and multidimensional way. While traditionally, GDP per capita has been used to assess regional convergence, a variety of new indicators tracking progress on issues correlated with inequality are available for this purpose today. Moreover, the proposals for the EU's post-2020 policy framework include new additional funding allocation criteria such as youth unemployment, education levels, climate change, and the reception and integration of migrants. These changes possibly indicate a shift towards a more comprehensive view of territorial convergence in the EU.

Reform Support Programme 2021-2027

13-03-2019

The European Commission adopted the proposal on the establishment of the Reform Support Programme on 31 May 2018, as part of the package for the upcoming multiannual financial framework for 2021-2027. The programme will provide financial and technical support for Member States to implement reforms aimed at increasing the resilience of their economies and modernising them, including priority reforms identified in the European Semester. The overall budget for the programme is €25 billion. It comprises ...

The European Commission adopted the proposal on the establishment of the Reform Support Programme on 31 May 2018, as part of the package for the upcoming multiannual financial framework for 2021-2027. The programme will provide financial and technical support for Member States to implement reforms aimed at increasing the resilience of their economies and modernising them, including priority reforms identified in the European Semester. The overall budget for the programme is €25 billion. It comprises three elements: a reform delivery tool (financial support); a Technical Support Instrument (technical expertise, building on the current Structural Reform Support Programme 2017-2020); and a convergence facility (preparation for adopting the euro). The Reform Support Programme will be open to all Member States on a voluntary basis, with no co-financing required. In the European Parliament, the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) and Committee on Budgets (BUDG) are working jointly on this file under Rule 55 of Parliament's Rules of Procedure. A vote in the joint committee meeting is expected on 1 April 2019, with a vote in plenary thereafter, during the second April 2019 part-session. Second edition. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

Regional governance in the EU

03-10-2018

The quality of public institutions has a major impact on social and economic development at regional level. Regions with high government effectiveness, low corruption and high-quality public services tend to have higher outcomes in terms of economic performance, social inclusion, environmental sustainability, education, health, and subjective well-being. Administrative capacity-building is therefore crucial, as it has a positive impact on creating conditions conducive to economic and social progress ...

The quality of public institutions has a major impact on social and economic development at regional level. Regions with high government effectiveness, low corruption and high-quality public services tend to have higher outcomes in terms of economic performance, social inclusion, environmental sustainability, education, health, and subjective well-being. Administrative capacity-building is therefore crucial, as it has a positive impact on creating conditions conducive to economic and social progress. The 2017 European Quality of Government Index (EQI) shows that institutional quality still varies across EU regions, but the traditional north-south and east-west divisions seem to be slowly blurring. While northern countries remain at the top, the eastern regions have made the most improvement compared with previous editions of the index. Some southern regions, meanwhile, have experienced a decline over the past few years. In the 2014 to 2020 period, EU cohesion policy has offered a variety of funding sources and instruments to support local and regional authorities. Investments are available for enhancing the management of EU funds and for building long-term institutional capacity. Specific actions include training for civil servants, cross-border cooperation, e-government tools, efforts to optimise procedures, and modernisation of public service delivery.

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