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The implementation timetable for cohesion policy is defined largely by its legislative framework. In order to be able to plan parliamentary work and exercise systematic scrutiny of policy implementation and of the Commission’s work, it is essential to have an overview of the timing of different steps in policy implementation in the coming years. This type of briefing was first published (and subsequently updated) in 2014 covering the 2014-2020 programming period. This version includes the policy ...

The Conference on the Future of Europe (CoFoE) has now concluded its work. Originally conceived in May 2019 from an idea France's President Emmanuel Macron put forward in his 'letter to the citizens of Europe', the CoFoE was intended to 'propose all the changes our political project needs, with an open mind, even to amending the Treaties', particularly on the basis of citizens' proposals. Citizens 'should play a leading and active part in setting our priorities and our level of ambition', as stated ...

EU regional policy in the Arctic

Briefing 01-06-2022

Local communities in the Arctic face a unique set of challenges, including remoteness, depopulation and a severe climate and topography. EU regional policy can support development in the European Arctic through investments under the European structural and investment funds, delivered through regional development and European territorial cooperation programmes, with further support also available in the form of a special aid allocation for northern sparsely populated regions. Structural funds represent ...

While each macro-regional strategy is unique in terms of the countries it brings together and the scope of its policies, they all share a common aim: to ensure a coordinated approach to issues that are best tackled together. Building on the success of the pioneering 2009 European Union strategy for the Baltic Sea region, this form of cooperation has since become firmly embedded in the EU's institutional framework, with four strategies now in place, covering 19 Member States and 10 non-EU countries ...

Often isolated, and with generally poorer access to public services, the EU's border regions face a unique set of challenges. This has been recognised under Article 174 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, which provides that particular attention should be paid to cross-border regions when developing action to strengthen the EU's economic, social and territorial cohesion. Yet while the EU has provided significant support over the years, particularly within the framework of European ...

In the context of the 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 will focus on smart growth and the green economy ...

In June 2021, the European Commission published a communication setting out a long-term vision for the EU's rural areas. The range of challenges facing such areas is acknowledged. They include issues relating to demographic change, such as the loss of population from remote rural areas, lower levels of gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, poor access to services, and issues concerning connectivity. A lower proportion of households in rural regions have access to next generation broadband compared ...

In the context of the 2021-2027 Multiannual Financial Framework and the cohesion policy package for the same period, the European Commission adopted a proposal for a regulation on the European Regional Development Fund and the Cohesion Fund on 29 May 2018. The proposed regulation lays down the rules for the implementation of these funds, including thematic concentration requirements and eligible activities. The European Parliament is due to vote at second reading during the June II plenary session ...

The European Green Deal and the European Union's commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions have put climate issues firmly on top of the EU agenda. However, the transition towards climate neutrality will also entail economic and social change. Cohesion policy, which accounts for about one third of the EU budget, can play an important role in tackling this challenge. The European Parliament is due to vote on an own-initiative report on 'cohesion policy and regional environment strategies in the ...

With more than EUR 55 billion in planned investments, Cohesion Policy seeks to make a significant contribution to the EU´s overall climate-related spending target of 20% in the 2014-2020 period. There are concrete achievements in a number of areas such as flood and forest fire protection. However, evidence also suggests that Cohesion Policy is at risk of missing some of its targets, including on energy efficiency, renewables and greenhouse gas emissions. Cohesion policy has also continued to provide ...