Good news: On 9 May EU national leaders gathered in Sibiu, Romania, on 9
May and committed to "
further reduce disparities between us"
"always help the most vulnerable in Europe, putting people before
". As #CohesionAlliance supporters, we need to continue to make the case
that to achieve this goal, we need a strong cohesion policy after 2020.
European Parliament concludes work and backs #CohesionAlliance
With the vote on
the European Social Fund Plus
(ESF+) on 4 April, the European Parliament finalised its position on the
future of cohesion policy. The vote complements the positions on the
European Fund for Regional Development
(ERDF) and the Cohesion Fund, on the
Common Provisions Regulation
, and on the specific provisions for
European Territorial Cooperation
(ETC) adopted on 26 and 27 March.
As #CohesionAlliance welcome the outcome of the Parliament's votes and call
on the EU Member States to speed up negotiations to ensure the new
investment plans are launched on time.
Don't cut cohesion funds
We urged EU institutions and Member States to continue to commit one-third
of the future EU budget to cohesion policy with a financial envelope of at
least one-third of the future EU budget, a position shared by the
. Together, we must continue to fight against the 10% cut initially
proposed by the European Commission. This involved sharp reductions for the
Cohesion Fund, ETC and ESF+, for which new tasks were introduced without
With regards to ETC, alongside ensuring an adequate budget, the EP called
for intensifying cross-border cooperation, including in maritime basins,
and interregional cooperation (including the new instrument to foster
interregional investments in the field of innovation).
No to centralisation
The European Parliament backs our demands to avoid centralisation or
top-down reform. New rules must preserve and strengthen the partnership
principle ensuring regional and local actors are involved in designing and
implementing investment plans – and the place-based approach, where policy
challenges are identified at regional and local level and the policy impact
is assessed in the light of consistent indicators.
European Parliament rejects ERDF national thresholds
The Parliament rejected the proposal to set national – instead of regional
– thresholds to concentrate ERDF funds on strategic objectives. MEPs want
instead to reinforce the local dimension of the fund by investing at least
10% of national allocations on urban areas and at least 5% on integrated
territorial development in disadvantaged non-urban areas.
European Social Funds must continue to be at the heart of
The European Parliament reaffirmed the key role of the European Social Fund
Plus within cohesion policy and its contribution to achieving economic,
social and territorial cohesion after the Commission revised the fund's
role with a strong connection to the coordination of Member States'
macroeconomic policies under the European Semester.
Cohesion policy as regions' main investment tool
Our call for cohesion policy to be a long-term investment tool for all
regions was shared by both the European Commission and the European
Parliament, whose proposals also provide a certain flexibility in
reprogramming resources in the event of unforeseen crises and natural
Yes to simplification, no to macroeconomic conditionality
There is broad convergence with the European Parliament on the need to
better coordinate cohesion policy with other EU policies, on simplification
and the opposition to conditionalities that cannot be influenced by local
and regional authorities or other beneficiaries. The European Parliament's
position against freezing European Structural funds as a sanction for the
infringement of EU fiscal discipline represents an important development
and a radical change compared with the past years.
Council set to adopt position on cohesion policy
The Council of the European Union is expected to finalise its position on
the legislative proposals for cohesion policy during the 25 June
General Affairs Council
The #CohesionAlliance must reiterate its call on Member States to ensure
Europe's citizens can still rely on a powerful cohesion policy, reducing
disparities and delivering more opportunities to all local communities.
The work to adopt the new regulations will continue under the new European
Parliament and Commission since, after adopting their individual positions
on all dossiers, the European Parliament and Council will need to find a
final agreement. In this perspective, on 10 July a #CohesionAlliance event
will gather in Brussels, at the European Committee of the Regions, newly
elected MEPs and cohesion policy stakeholders to discuss pending issues and
the timeline of the final work to shape the cohesion policy 2021-2027.
Delays to future EU budget will
An agreement by autumn 2019 on the EU Budget 2021-2027 - the Multiannual
Financial Framework (MFF) - seems to be increasingly unlikely and there is
a stronger risk of a late agreement – and a consequent investment gap for
regions and cities. For this reason, it is crucial to mobilise in each
Member State and demand national governments to proactively seek to create
a wide consensus on a balanced and timely compromise, securing adequate
funding for cohesion policy.
All partners are encouraged to echo these concerns and priorities within
the debate for the next European Elections, to make the voice of a
bottom-up, inclusive and sustainable Europe heard!
Six ways to take action!
1. Send us a video statement of max 1 minute
explaining why we need a strong EU cohesion policy, what it means for your
community and what you expect for the future. Videos can be sent to CohesionAlliance@cor.europa.eu
Share your projects:
Tweet or publish on Facebook or Instagram a picture from a project
supported by EU cohesion funds showing the impact. Don’t forget to use the
3. Hold an event in your community:
if you need support to organise an event on EU cohesion policy, if you need
materials in your language, speakers etc.
4. Join the Petition:
help us promote the
. It takes seconds to join and every signature counts
5. Let people know:
we are developing material for partners which are being made available in
(under "Materials for Partners"). Meanwhile:
· #CohesionAlliance web banner can be downloaded
· #CohesionAlliance statement of principles is available in all languages
homepage (you have just to select the relevant language on top right).
6. Share your view:
many partners have already shared
on cohesion policy. Get in touch, share your ideas.
Cohesion Policy: news and events
Better communicating cohesion policy -
European Committee of the Regions
5-6 June: AER General Assembly & Spring Bureau Meeting 5 & 6 June in Larnaca, Cyprus
6 June: Launch of AER project 'Together for Cohesion: Let's rEUnite' and subsequent Knowledge Sharing Workshop, Larnaca, Cyprus
CEMR Policy Committee, in Mamaia (Romania)
Meeting of the
CPMR Political Bureau
, in Donegal (Ireland)
13 and 14 June:
meeting on the Urban Agenda
in Bucharest (Romania)
on MFF and Strategic agenda
General Affairs Council
Adoption of the opinions on "Recommendations for the successful design of
regional development strategies beyond 2020" and on "Better communication
for Cohesion Policy" at the Meeting of the CoR commission
for Territorial Cohesion Policy (
Gathering of the CohesionAlliance partners at the European
Committee of the Regions in Brussels, more info coming soon
European Week of Regions and Cities
47th CPMR General Assembly, 2019 in Palermo (Sicilia, Italy)
: AEBR General Assembly, Annual Conference and CB School in Dresden (Euregio Elbe-Labe, DE/CZ)
6 to 8 May 2020:
CEMR congress on SDGs, in Innsbruck (Austria)
Campaign tools, actions and materials
for the European elections
CEMR video :
Discover EU cohesion policy in your region
CEMR video :
local dialogues on cohesion policy
: EU is Cohesion: make it in Wallonia
: EU is Cohesion: Metro line 3 in Sofia
CoR video : EU is Cohesion: Molenbeek has things to say