Additional 1.4 billion euro for CEF direct grants: Commission proposals for EFSI 2 and Mid-term Review of the MFF
On 14 September, on the occasion of the State of the Union, the President Jean-Claude Juncker presented two new legislative proposals:
- Extension of the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) – so-called EFSI 2:http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=COM:2016:581:FIN
- Mid-term review/revision of the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) 2014-2020: http://ec.europa.eu/budget/mff/figures/index_en.cfm#com_2016_603
As ESPO, we led the transport campaign that asked the European institutions to strengthen the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) heading in the EU budget in the context of the mid-term review of the MFF. We are quite happy about the Commission proposals that can be summarized as it follows:
- 500 million euro will go from the CEF financial instruments (not grants) to the new EFSI 2. However, out of these 500 million euro, only 155 million come from the transport budget of the CEF financial instruments, the rest will come from the energy and telecommunications heading of CEF.
- The direct grants of the CEF budget will be strengthened of 1.4 billion euro of which:
- 1 billion euro for grants that will be blended with EFSI financial instruments
- 400 million of “pure” grants
The proposed legislative proposals will now have to be agreed by the European Parliament and the Council. The Commission aims to reach an agreement before the end of 2016.