The European Commission has today endorsed a positive preliminary assessment of Portugal's payment request for €1.8 billion of grants and loans under the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF), the key instrument at the heart of NextGenerationEU.
On 30 September 2022, Portugal submitted to the Commission a payment request based on the achievement of the 20 milestones and targets indicated in the Council Implementing Decision for the second instalment. They cover reforms in the areas of management of public hospitals and the digital transition in the private and public sectors. Several milestones and targets also concern major investments in the areas of health, forestry, water management, social protection, innovation, sustainable mobility, digital skills, culture, public finances and public administration.
With their request, the Portuguese authorities provided detailed and comprehensive evidence demonstrating the fulfilment of the 20 milestones and targets. The Commission has thoroughly assessed this information before presenting its positive preliminary assessment of the payment request.
The Portuguese recovery and resilience plan includes a wide range of investment and reform measures in 20 thematic components. The plan will be supported by €15.5 billion in grants and €2.7 in loans, of which €2.2 billion was disbursed to Portugal in pre-financing on 3 August 2021 and €1.16 billion under the first payment request on 9 May 2022.
Payments under the RRF are performance-based and conditional on Member States implementing the investments and reforms outlined in their respective recovery and resilience plans.
The Commission has now sent its positive preliminary assessment of Portugal's fulfilment of the milestones and targets required for this payment to the Economic and Financial Committee (EFC), asking for its opinion. The EFC's opinion, to be delivered within a maximum of four weeks, should be considered in the Commission's assessment. Following the EFC's opinion, the Commission will adopt the final decision on the disbursement of the financial contribution, in accordance with the examination procedure, through a comitology committee. Following the adoption of the decision by the Commission, the disbursement to Portugal can take place.
The Commission will assess further payment requests by Portugal based on the fulfilment of the milestones and targets outlined in the Council Implementing Decision, reflecting progress on the implementation of the investments and reforms.
The amounts disbursed to the Member States are published in the Recovery and Resilience Scoreboard, which shows progress of the implementation of the national recovery and resilience plans.
President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen said: “I am delighted to announce good news to Portugal today. We believe that Portugal has conducted the necessary reforms and investments to receive an important payment from our NextGenerationEU recovery plan. Portugal is for instance investing in public transport and has put in place measures that will strengthen workers' digital skills. Once Member States give their green light, we will pay €1.8 billion to Portugal. So well done Portugal!”
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