EU Cohesion policy: €34 billion approved for regions and cities
Today, at the press conference for the launch of the 19th European Week of Regions and Cities 2021, the Commission took stock of the implementation of the Recovery Assistance for Cohesion and the Territories of Europe (REACT-EU). With €34.1 billion approved and €3.5 billion already paid out in just four months, REACT-EU was the very first instrument of NextGenerationEU to make payments for the recovery of Member States.
In just 4 months, 86% of the available REACT-EU resources for this year have been approved. €21.7 billion are mobilised through the European Regional Development Fund, €12 billion through the European Social Fund and €410 million through the Fund for European Aid to the most Deprived.
The REACT-EU funding complements the Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative (CRII) package that mobilised more than €21 billion in response to the urgent economic and social needs of the sectors most affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
Here are some concrete examples of the support that people and businesses have received through REACT-EU:
- European Regional Development Fund (ERDF): In Portugal, the ERDF has supported the purchase of vaccines for more than half of the population. In Slovenia, the ERDF has funded the installation of new IT systems in the health sector. In the Czech Republic, the ERDF is funding the purchase of new medical equipment helping the regions to become more resilient against future health crises. In Sweden, the ERDF is supporting small companies to manage the digital transition.
- European Social Fund (ESF): Across Member States, people received training, coaching, and career guidance to increase their chances of maintaining their jobs or finding new ones. In Italy, businesses received hiring subsidies to support the employment of women and young people. The ESF also supported financial counselling services and housing for homeless people.
- Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD): In Austria and Romania for instance, children in need have received school supplies. In Estonia, France, Luxembourg and other Member States, food aid like warm meals and basic material assistance like hygiene products were delivered to most deprived people.
Image © European Commission, 2021
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