The EU cohesion policy budget after 2020 is now up for discussion
12 April 2018
09:10 Arrivals (cohesion policy)
10:25 Public session (cohesion policy)
13:30 Press conference (cohesion policy)
Future of the cohesion policy
The Council discussed the future of cohesion policy after 2020.
Ministers focused on a number of key political issues including the following:
The priorities for cohesion policy over the next programming period
The type of regions to be covered, categories of regions and co-financing rates
Ways of making cohesion policy more effective and of speeding up its implementation
The debate will feed into the Commission's preparations for its proposals on the legislative package for cohesion policy post-2020.
The debate on cohesion policy post 2020 is an essential part of the general debate about the future of Europe. Establishing the link between the two is very important - we cannot decide how to allocate money for cohesion without first having defined our priorities - without having envisaged the sort of Europe we want to have in ten years time or, perhaps even the Europe we want for our children and their children.
Tomislav Donchev, Deputy Prime Minister of Bulgaria
Communication of cohesion policy
The Commission briefed the Council about activities which have been undertaken recently to strengthen communication on the achievements and benefits of cohesion policy.
Last year the Commission proposed a number of initiatives, to be taken forward jointly by the Commission, the member states and other stakeholders, in order to raise awareness of the benefits of cohesion policy for the lives of citizens. These included:
Launching a cohesion alliance as a grassroots initiative in support of cohesion policy
Photo exhibitions highlighting the achievements of cohesion policy
Debates on the future of cohesion policy at regional and local level
Over recent months there has been steady progress in implementing these various initiatives.
Ministers reiterated their support for further efforts to increase the visibility of cohesion policy for citizens.
Implementation of cohesion policy after 2020
The Council adopted without discussion conclusions on the delivery and implementation of cohesion policy post-2020.
The conclusions call for simpler rules at EU and national level, greater responsibility for the member states in the implementation process, and early preparation of the new programmes in order to ensure a smooth transition to the next programming period.