Monitoring the European Cohesion Policy

On 29th May 2018, the European Commission published the draft regulations which will determine the restructuring of the European Cohesion Policy in the programming period 2021 - 2027. By this, the Commission formally rang in the negotiations with the European Council and the European Parliament. According to the draft, Germany will get 21 percent less regional funding. However, the remaining 15,7 billion Euro shall be invested in all Federal States ("Bundesländer"). The question regarding the "European additional value" of the different funding pools is as crucial as never: What can and what should be funded with the remaining budget?

For the European Commission, ensuring global competitiveness and combating climate change are crucial future tasks. In the future, the major part of the money will flow in actions for intelligent and innovative growth, support of the digital transformation, in the expansion of research, reduction of CO₂-emmissions, the integration of migrants and vulnerable groups, as well as in health investments. The policy objective "a Europe closer to Citizens" still allows the funding of integrated development strategies wich combine different topics in a coherent approach. This includes urban districts with special development needs as well as functional intermunicipal areas. At least six percent of the national ressources shall be invested in this policy objective - so far (2014-2020), it were five. The announcement of a "European Urban Initiative" which shall be exclusively managed by the European Commission brings a certain ambiguity: It shall include programmes for the exchange of municipalities as URBACT, innovative urban pilot projects as well as the support of the Urban Agenda of the EU - thus topics, on which the member states currently have a great say. 

Regarding the transnational cooperation programmes (Interreg), it can be deduced from the drafts that the future Interreg programmes will be related afresh on their real strength: the funding of cooperation and communication in functional areas. The draft regulations estimate in total 8,4 billion Euro for the European Territorial Cooperation programmes in the period 2021-2027.

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