Members of EU Parliament agree on rules for future regional and cohesion funding

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EU budget future

New rules for the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Cohesion Funds (CF) were approved on 14 February 2019 by the Regional Development Committee and will be applied in the context of the upcoming Multiannual Financial Framework for 2021-2027. The updated rules aim to strengthen the EU’s economic, social and territorial cohesion policy. They will cover all regions, with special focus on less developed communities, urban and outermost regions and, as rapporteur Andrea Cozzolino highlighted, “for the first time, a minimum of 5% could also be allocated to small villages and rural areas which were hit hard by the crisis.”

Countries Minimum % of resources at national level for

“smarter Europe”

Minimum % of resources at national level for

“greener Europe”

More developed regions

(GDP per capita above 100% of average EU GDP)

50% 30%
Transitions regions

(GDP per capita between 75-100% of average EU GDP)

40% 30%
Less developed regions

(GDP per capita below 75% of average EU GDP)

30% 30%

Members of EU Parliament said that the significant part of the ERDF should be spent on smart growth and the green economy, while the Cohesion Funds should continue to focus on investment in environmental and transport infrastructure. Regions should spend at least 30% to 50% of the funding received on a smart, innovative Europe and, on the fight against climate change and for the circular economy, every region has to invest at least 30% to achieve these crucial goals. More information can be found here.

Key Takeaways:

  • Cover all regions, concentrate most money on vulnerable areas
  • Focus more on sustainable urban development and accommodate special needs of outermost regions
  • Increase funding dedicated to climate objectives