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European Cohesion And Funding Policies

Hausarbeit 2010 26 Seiten

BWL - Investition und Finanzierung

Leseprobe

TABLE OF CONTENT

LIST OF TABLES

LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS

I. EUROPEAN COHESION POLICY
A. ESTABLISHMENT, DEVELOPMENT, AND THE CURRENT STATUS OF THE COHESION POLICY
B. FUNDING STREAMS AND THEIR OBJECTIVES

II. LESSONS LEARNED - EXPERIENCES OF THE PAST FUNDING PERIOD
A. EFFICIENCY AND EFFECTIVENESS
B. COHESION POLICY AND THE GOALS OF LISBON
C. OBJECTIVE INTEGRATION - THE MEMBER STATES OF THE EAST- WARD ENLARGEMENTS

III. NEW CHALLENGES, NEW WAYS? THE FUTURE OF THE COHESION POLICY
A. IMPACTS AND ADEQUACY: EUROPE
B. THE BARCA-REPORT - MEASURE OF THINGS?

BIBLIOGRAPHY

LIST OF TABLES

TABLE 1 Comparison of the per capita GDP in PPS and the employment rate for the years 2000, 2004, and 2006 for the EU-15 and EU-25 Member States

TABLE 2 Comparison of the per capita GDP in PPS and the employment rate for the years 2000, 2004, and 2006 for EU Member States.

TABLE 3 Overview of selected Structural Indicators for the funding period 2000 − 2006

TABLE 4 Comparison of the per capita GDP in PPS and the employment rate for the years 2000, 2004, and 2006 for EU Member States with an emphasis on eastward enlargement Member States.

TABLE 5 Main goals of Europe 2020 at a glance

TABLE 6 The ten pillars of a reformed EU Cohesion Policy

LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

I. EUROPEAN COHESION POLICY

The first chapter is divided into two sections; the first section aims to present the most important steps toward the current systems of European Cohesion and Funding Policies, and the second section summarizes the main funding streams of the current cohesion policy. In addition, in the second part, the linkage between the different financial instruments and the objectives of Structural Fund assistance is clarified.

A. ESTABLISHMENT, DEVELOPMENT, AND THE CURRENT STATUS OF THE COHESION POLICY

Structural policy dates back to the time of the European Economic Communities (EEC). The foundation stone was laid with the adoption of the EEC Treaty, which sets the objective of a „(…) harmonious development [of the Member States’ economies] by reduc- ing the differences existing between the various regions and the backwardness of the less favoured regions (…).“1 In 1960, the first fund to be established was the European Social Fund (ESF). Together with the European Investment Bank (EIB), which had already been established in 1957, the ESF was expected to underpin industrial reconversion2. In addi- tion to the ESF, the European Agriculture and Guidance Fund (EAGF) was established in 1962. In 2006, it was substituted by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) and agricultural policy was uncoupled from the Structural Funds. The economic crisis of the 1970s brought about a general expansion in the scope of structural policy, which also became obvious with the establishment of the European Regional Develop- ment Fund in 19753. Between 1975 and 1985, the European structural policy evolved slowly. With the adoption of the Single European Act, the cohesion policy was enshrined in the Treaties in 19864. With regard to upcoming enlargement rounds, the creation of spe- cifically targeted financial instruments becomes necessary. Thus, the Poland and Hungary Aid for the Reconstruction of the Economy (PHARE), the Instrument for Structural Pro- grammes for Pre-accession (ISPA), and Support for Pre-accession measures for Agricul- tural and Rural Development (SAPARD) funds were created. The first one dates back to 1989, and the latter two to 19995. In 1989, the first reform of the Structural Funds was un- dertaken6. The next steps in the development of the European structural policy were marked by the sector-specific Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance (FIFG) in 1994, and the Cohesion Fund, a comprehensive new fund that was established in 19937. The FIFG was replaced by the European Fisheries Fund in 2006. In 1997, the cohesion policy was affirmed once again in the Amsterdam Treaty that also included the basis for the European Employment Strategy8. With the approval of the Lisbon Strategy by the Euro- pean Council in 2000, the paradigm shift in the cohesion policy began to gain momentum. The political frame of structural assistance from this time was characterized by the goals of Lisbon: growth, employment, and innovation9. Further steps in the development of the co- hesion policy that are worth mentioning are the implementation of the Instrument for Pre- Accession Assistance (IPA) for potential accession candidates and the European Neigh- bourhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI) for neighboring partner countries in 2006, whereby the latter was extended to the countries of the Eastern Partnership. For the de- bate on the future of the cohesion policy from 2013 onward, the fourth cohesion report10 and the BARCA report are essential. The first one was published in 2007 and the latter in 2009. Similar to the Lisbon strategy, the Commission’s proposal of the Europe 2020 strat- egy that was published in 2010 will have a significant influence on the current and upcom- ing arrangement of the cohesion policy11.

B. FUNDING STREAMS AND THEIR OBJECTIVES

For the 2007-2013 period of the cohesion policy, three financial instruments are essential: the two Structural Funds and the Cohesion Fund. The ERDF and the ESF are considered Structural Funds. They are all aimed at reducing the disparities in development among the regions and Member States along three main defined lines of action that now subsume previous objectives12. These three key objectives of the cohesion policy are the acceleration of the convergence of Member States and regions13, enhancement of regional competitiveness and employment14, and the strengthening of European territorial cooperation15. Each fund supports the three objectives of the cohesion policy to a varying degree. Since the reform in 2006, all three funds, with their particular underlying objective(s), have been closely linked to the goals of Lisbon and Gothenburg with an emphasis on innovation, growth, jobs, and sustainable development16.

The objective of the ERDF is to support the reinforcement of economic and social cohesion by redressing regional imbalances. This is achieved by supporting the develop- ment and structural adjustment of regional economies, including the conversion of declin- ing industrial regions. In terms of financial endowment, the ERDF is by far the largest Structural Fund17. The ERDF supports interventions with regard to convergence, regional competitiveness and employment, and the European territorial cooperation objective18.

The ESF is the most important financial instrument in the range of European employment and social policy,19 and contributes to the integration of unemployed and disadvantaged segments of the population into working life mainly by funding training measures. Moreover, it intervenes within the scope of the convergence and regional competitiveness and employment objectives20.

The Cohesion Fund is intended for Member States with a per capita GDP of less than 90% of the community average. It „(…) provide[s] a financial contribution to projects in the fields of the environment and trans-European networks in the area of transport infrastructure.“21 The Cohesion Fund supports actions within the framework of the conver- gence objective22 and is the only fund to be subject to macroeconomic conditionality23.

For the funding period 2007-2013, it is foreseen that 35.7% of the total EU budget will be allocated to the cohesion policy. Thus, it is the second largest budget item. Of this share, 62% is related to projects that must be financed after considering the Lisbon goals; this is a sum of 347.41 billion Euros at current prices24. By examining the financial re- sources in connection with the objectives of the cohesion policy, 81.54% of the total amount serves regions that are eligible for funding within the convergence objective. Of the total allocated resources, 15.95% is allocated to regions that are eligible for support from the regional competitiveness and employment objective; regions linked to the Euro- pean territorial cooperation objective have a share of 2.52% of the total amount25,26.

II. LESSONS LEARNED - EXPERIENCES OF THE PAST FUNDING PERIOD

A. EFFICIENCY AND EFFECTIVENESS

This chapter examines the effectiveness and efficiency of the cohesion policy in reducing regional disparities, with a reference to the preceding fundi]ng period. Due to the restriction on the length of in this paper, the reduction of regional disparities will be assessed by examining economic performance and employment according to the objectives of the cohesion policy and its financial instruments27.

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

The question of effectiveness is related to the degree to which the objective of reducing regional disparities has been achieved28. The per capita GDP in PPS figures for the EU-15 indicate that in the 2000-2006 funding period, there was a growth of 20.91%. During the same period, there was an increase of 23% for the corresponding figure for EU-25. According to the objective of reducing regional disparities, it can be assumed that a there was a reduction (Table 1)29. Further, an examination of the employment figures reveals that the contribution of the EU-15 is larger than that of the countries of the first eastward enlargement,30 which indicates an increase in disparities. Moreover, the disparities within the Member States and region are significant31 (Table 2).

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

It is evident from the table that the Baltic States underwent a particularly strong growth in per capita GDP during the period 2000-2006, whereas their overall economic performance in comparison to the EU-27 average is almost weak. Moreover, the former cohesion countries, Greece, Spain, Ireland, and Portugal made up further leeway regarding to an convergence of their economic performance and the EU-27 average.

When examining the employment situation of the EU-15 and EU-10 Member States, the differences within the groups are significant. In the funding period 2000-2006, the highest increase in employment was in Estonia, Latvia, and Spain. Portugal, Malta, and Poland had to deal with a downturn in the same period. Overall, the EU-15 average is 3% above the EU-27 average, while the EU-10 average is 3% below.

Summarizing the results, it can be stated that there was a reduction in regional dis- parities in terms of economic performance and employment to some extent; therefore, the cohesion policy is also effective to some extent. However, disparities of and within the dif- ferent groups and Member States developed in different ways and they remain signifi- cant32.

[...]


1 Preamble EEC Treaty

2 PIATTONI 2008: 74

3 Ibid.

4 Cf. http://europa.eu/legislation_summaries/institutional_affairs/treaties/treaties_singleact_en.htm (24.08.2010).

5 First these instruments aimed to help just Poland and Hungary, and thereafter all Central and East European Countries, to reconsider their agricultural, industrial, and administrative capacities and prepare for accession (cf. PIATTONI 2008: 75).

6 It reinforces the principle of multi-annual programming, establishes priority development objectives, and establishes a system of partnership with the Member States and other economic and social actors (cf. http://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/funds/prord/prords/history_en.htm, 25.08.2010). For an overview of further reform rounds, see PIATTONI 2008: 75.

7 Ibid.

8 INFOREGIO 2008: 6 ff.

9 Cf. http://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/policy/history/index4_de.htm (25.08.2010).

10 Cf. http://www.bmwi.de/BMWi/Redaktion/PDF/G/gemeinsame-stellungnahme-zum-vierten-bericht-der-ek,property=pdf,bereic h=bmwi,sprache=de,rwb=true.pdf (25.08.2010).

11 The development of structural policy and its increasing importance also becomes obvious by examining the financial budget of the Structural Funds over time. An overview of the financial endowment of the Structural Funds over different funding periods is provided by HARTWIG (HARTWIG 2009: 328).

12 With the reform of 1999, the former seven objectives were reduced to three (Cf. PIATTONI 2008:76; See also HARTWIG 2008: 326).

13 The convergence objective addresses the least developed Member States and regions whose per capita GDP in the last three years, before the adaption of the Structural Funds regulations, stood at less than 75% of the overall average of the 27 Member States. It also focuses on the improvement of the performance and quality of public administration matters (Cf. SEYFRIED 2008: 52).

14 This objective was designed to assist Member States and regions that are not covered by the objective of convergence to deal with economic and social change, challenges of globalization, and transition to a knowledge-based society (Cf. EURACTIV 2006).

15 The third objective aims to strengthen cooperation at cross-border, transnational, and interregional levels in the fields of urban, rural, and coastal development, and foster the development of economic relations and networking between small- and medium-sized enterprises (http://europa.eu/scadplus/glossary/structural_cohesion_fund_en.htm, 30.08.2010).

16 HARTWIG 2008:323 in connection with EURACTIV 2006. The connection between the Lisbon Strategy and the concrete utilization of European subsidies in the Member States is codified in the strategic guidelines developed by the EC (cf. SEYFRIED 2008: 50, COUNCIL 2006).

17 Cf. WEIDENFELD/WESSELS 2009: 433.

18 For further information, see http://europa.eu/legislation_summaries/agriculture/general_framework/g24234_en.htm (30.08.2010).

19 Its aim is „(…) to improve employment opportunities for workers in the internal market and to contribute thereby to rais- ing the standard of living (…)“ whereby its objective is „(…) to render the employment of workers easier and to increase their geographical and occupational mobility within the Union, and to facilitate their adaptation to industrial changes and to changes in production systems, in particular through vocational training and retraining“ (Article 162 TFEU).

20 More detailed information is provided in the following Web site: http://europa.eu/legislation_summaries/employment_and_social_policy/job_creation_measures/g24232_de.htm, 30.08.2010.

21 Article 177 TFEU

22 Cf. http://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/funds/cf/index_en.htm 31.08.2010.

23 By contravening the objectives of the growth and stability pact without taking the necessary countermeasures, the al- location of resources from the Cohesion Fund can be suspended partially or completely by the Council (cf. SEYFRIED 2008: 55).

24 Cf. http://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/policy/fonds/index_en.htm in connection with EURACTIV 2006. Thereby, almost 80% of the total amount is allocated to the two Structural Funds and circa 20% to the Cohesion Fund (cf. EURACTIV 2006).

25 Cf. http://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/policy/fonds/index_en.htm 31.08.2010.

26 For a detailed graphical overview on the financial allocation according to objectives, see European Commission 2007: 24.

27 Three categories of action are identifiable: reducing economic disparities, developing competitive, diversified regional economies, and boosting sustainable growth and jobs (Cf. http://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/policy/impact/index_en.htm, 01.09.2010)

28 Cf. http://www.olev.de/e/effekt.htm, 03.09.2010. A statement is made subsequently with regard to the question of whether the cohesion policy is the appropriate instrument for reducing regional disparities.

29 The reason is the higher contribution toward GDP growth of the ten Member States from the first eastward enlarge- ment.

30 Reason: The total contribution of these states to employment has to be lower according to the lower employment rate growth of the EU-25 in comparison to the rate of the EU-15.

31 Cf. European Commission 2008:30 ff. and European Commission 2007: 3 ff.

32 At this point, it must be noted explicitly that the connection between the cohesion policy and development within the economies are not undisputed.

Details

Seiten
26
Jahr
2010
ISBN (eBook)
9783640936410
ISBN (Buch)
9783640936717
Dateigröße
1.2 MB
Sprache
Englisch
Katalognummer
v173408
Institution / Hochschule
Hochschule für Wirtschaft und Recht Berlin – Fernstudieninstitut
Note
1,0
Schlagworte
European Cohesion Policy Barca-Report Europe 2020 Strategy European Cohesion and funding policies

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Titel: European Cohesion And Funding Policies