A Sting Exclusive: “Regional Policy: a fully-fledged investment policy”, Commissioner Cretu reveals live from European Business Summit 2015

Written by Commissioner Corina Cretu, responsible for Regional Policy

Commissioner Corina Cretu, responsible for Regional Policy (European Commission)

Commissioner Corina Cretu, responsible for Regional Policy (European Commission)

As Commissioner for Regional Policy, I have the important task of ensuring the greatest impact of our policy on the ground in terms of growth and jobs, in line with the objectives of both the Europe 2020 Strategy and the €315 billion Investment Plan.

Regional Policy has been reformed for the new budgetary period 2014-2020, to better take up the challenges of the real economy and the need for strategic investments. The programmes we have prepared and adopted with the EU Member States are performance-guided, have clearly-defined objectives, and focus on four key growth areas: the digital agenda, research and innovation, support to SMEs and entrepreneurship and the low-carbon economy. More than 100 billion euro, nearly half the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), will be allocated to these four priorities throughout 2014-2020.

The 2015 European Business Summit focuses on the impact of digitalisation on industry and society; in the Commission, we are aware of the fantastic potential of the digital sector. We are convinced that the transformative role of digital technologies can be used to create growth and jobs. Digital technologies can transform our economies and our way of life as profoundly as the steam engine did in the 18th century or electricity did in the 19th. Today, 6 May, the Commission is unveiling its strategy for a Digital Single Market. This strategy clearly represents an unprecedented opportunity for innovation, growth and job creation across Europe. For 2014-2020, €20 billion from EU Cohesion Policy funds will be invested in digital and Information and Communication Technologies (ICT). Managing Authorities will be able to select and implement the projects that correspond best to people’s needs, helping the future Digital Single Market see the light of day. It means, for example, investing in broadband, online public services and better access to ICT for small businesses.

To boost the effect of our investments in these fields, our reformed Regional Policy is equipped with the right tools. Take, for example, Smart Specialisation Strategies. Before ERDF investments are allocated to research and innovation, Member States and regions have to draw up such Strategies, to identify niche areas of competitive strength, and opportunities for public-private partnerships. By focusing on what gives a region its greatest competitive potential, smart specialisation helps position the region in specific global markets and international value chains.

To further multiply the impact of each euro invested, we also strongly encourage the increased use of financial instruments, to give SMEs more support and access to credit. If their usage doubled compared to 2007-2013, such financial instruments would generate up to €40 billion of additional investment in the coming years. To help Managing Authorities make the most of this major opportunity, on 19 January we launched fi-compass, an advisory service on financial instruments for the European Structural and Investment Funds, in partnership with the European Investment Bank (EIB). This service is part of the “one-stop shop” advisory hub, to be launched as an important part of the EU Investment Plan.

Furthermore, in the first 6 months of my mandate, I worked hard to solve the issues that prevent some Member States from fully exploiting the potential of Regional Policy in terms of strategic investments. Low absorption rates, weak administrative capacities, and cumbersome procedures are some of the problems we are currently addressing in a country-specific and short-term manner to make sure that EU funds are spent in a strategic and efficient way, with the regions’ economic wealth and the wellbeing of the citizens at heart.

40 years after the creation of the ERDF, Regional Policy has become the EU’s main investment policy; a smart, strategic investment policy and a pillar of the Investment Plan. My job is now to make sure that this policy has the expected and much-needed results in terms of growth and jobs: and that is exactly what I will do.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Featured Stings

Germany tries to save Europe from war between Ukraine and Russia

After Brexit and Grexit, Brussels to deal with Poloust

UN chief condemns suspected Boko Haram attacks targeting Eid al-Fitr celebrations in Nigeria

Let your fingers do the walking

Work Together to Build a New Type of International Relations and a Community with a Shared Future for Humanity

EU presses India for a free trade agreement

To my Chinese friend

Advocate General ‘outlaws’ Data Retention Directive

MEPs Anti-fraud votes for more votes?

Iran nuclear talks’ deadline extended: the match is still open for many

Fisherwomen of Lake Chad show optimism in face of multiple challenges

On International Youth Day the European Youth Forum calls for true youth participation

How the EU sees its own and Russia’s role in Ukraine

EU’s new environmental policy on biofuels impacts both the environment and the European citizen

Changing the EU copyright law won’t bring us much closer to Digital Single Market

EU readies for eventual annulment of the Turkish agreement on immigrants-refugees

From inconvenience to opportunity: the importance of international medical exchanges

Juncker Investment Plan for Europe welcomed by European Youth Forum

Eurozone: A Sluggish economy offers no extra jobs

Global Citizen-Volunteer Internships

The developing countries keep the world going

EU Parliament: A catastrophic crisis management by European leaders

Vulnerable young people must not be blamed & stigmatised for violent radicalisation

Commission presents far-reaching anti-tax evasion measures

Trump goes ahead with plan to undo globalization; targets China and EU

Young people meet in Malta to shape the future of Europe

EU/Africa, Caribbean and Pacific: towards which partnership?

“None of our member states has the dimension to compete with China and the US, not even Germany!”, Head of EUREKA Pedro Nunes on another Sting Exclusive

Why medicine is relevant to the battle against climate change

UN chief welcomes resolution to 27-year-old disagreement over renaming the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

Will GDPR block Blockchain?

Hostilities in Syria’s southwest, mean cuts in vital aid across Jordanian border: Senior UN official

Politics needs to “Youth UP” in order the ensure the future of our democracies

‘Free state aid’ for imprudent banks

EU prolongs economic sanctions on Russia by six months

Unemployment and exclusion brings EU cities to boiling point

EU Commission: Germany can make Eurozone grow again just by helping itself

Greece did it again

European Investment Bank to borrow €70 billion in 2013

EU summit: Are the London Tories planning an exit from the EU?

Have central banks missed the exit train?

Syria: Civilians caught in crossfire, UN refugee chief urges Jordan to open its border

Is Eurozone heading for disinflation?

EU elections: The louder the threats and the doomsaying the heavier the weight of the vote

Nicaragua: MEPs condemn brutal repression and demand elections

Latest leaked TTIP document confirms EU sovereignty may be under threat

Eurozone stuck in a high risk deflation area; Draghi expects further price plunge

Τhe EU Refugee Crisis: a day in the life of a Refugee in Greece

ECB reaches the boundaries of its mandate to revive the entirety of Eurozone

Easing funding woes for UN agency assisting Palestine refugees a ‘wise investment for today and the future’

European financial values on the rise

The European Sting @ European Business Summit 2014 – the preview

How young entrepreneurs should be supported: what assistance should governments provide?

‘Agile’, multilateral response vital to combat terrorism – UN chief Guterres

Global Citizen-Volunteer Internships

Migration crisis will keep deteriorating as common EU political will is simply not there

JADE visits Lithuanian Junior Initiatives

Eurozone to enter the winter…

EU Court of Justice invalidates Safe Harbour and the game for thousands US businesses suddenly changes

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s