Extracts from the press conference by Johannes Hahn, on the vote on the cohesion policy package

Type: Summary of press conference   Reference: I-083388   Duration: 10:04:04  Lieu:
End production: 07/11/2013   First transmission: 07/11/2013
On 7 November 2013, Johannes Hahn, Member of the EC in charge of Regional Policy, gave a press conference after the vote by the EP's Regional Development Committee on reform of Cohesion Policy and setting up of common rules for the European Structural and Investment Funds.

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TIME DESCRIPTION DURATION
10:00:00 Title 00:00:05
10:00:05 Exterior view of the Berlaymont building in Brussels 00:00:05
10:00:10 Arrival of Johannes Hahn, Member of the EC in charge of Regional Policy, at the press conference 00:00:05
10:00:15 Soundbite by Johannes Hahn (in ENGLISH): Today we have taken a major step forward in equipping the EU to support Europe's real economy – to create jobs by supporting its SMEs, kick-starting innovation and fostering its low carbon economy. The deal confirmed just now by the REGI Committee which is the European Parliament's lead committee in this, turns EU Cohesion Policy into vital tool to deliver Europe's Growth Agenda. 00:00:29
10:00:45 Cutaway of a photographer 00:00:03
10:00:49 Soundbite by Johannes Hahn (in ENGLISH): Crucially it introduces three new elements to make it more effective and oriented towards clear results. Let me briefly remind you of these: First - Member States and regions shall make clear choices and concentrate funding on a few priorities of EU relevance: R&D and innovation, SME support, energy efficiency and renewable energies, poverty reduction, fight against unemployment, and job creation. 00:00:33
10:01:22 Cutaway of the audience 00:00:03
10:01:25 Soundbite by Johannes Hahn (in ENGLISH): For SMEs alone, support will double from €70 billion now to at least €140 billion in the next period. As well as this, at least €23 billion in investments can be guaranteed for renewables and energy efficiency. This is a vitally important area for growth. And it will help to meet EU climate goals and reduce energy dependency. 00:00:34
10:01:59 Cutaway of the audience 00:00:03
10:02:03 Soundbite by Johannes Hahn (in ENGLISH): Member States and regions will have to spell out clearly what objectives they want to achieve with the available funding and they will have to identify exactly how to measure progress towards those aims. It's all about quantifiable results – and also about transparency. Our changes will allow citizens to check how resources are used and it will allow the European Institutions to hold regular political debates on the functioning of the policy. 00:00:36
10:02:39 Journalist working on his laptop 00:00:03
10:02:43 Soundbite by Johannes Hahn (in ENGLISH): The third key element in our reform: For the first time we are introducing conditions that Member States and regions must meet before funds can be spent. This is to ensure that investments are made in an environment which is conducive to maximize their impact. For example, business friendly reforms, transport strategies, measures to improve public procurement systems or compliance with environmental laws are conditions which will need to be met before investments can be made in those areas. 00:00:41
10:03:24 Cutaway of the audience 00:00:03
10:03:28 Soundbite by Johannes Hahn (in ENGLISH): Now it is for the European Parliament to confirm today's committee vote. I trust they will do this. The deal today also pulls together all EU funds in a simpler, common framework making them easier to use and more strategic as a tool to put Europe firmly on path of recovery. Investors are waiting, regions are waiting. It is vital these programmes start on time. It is also a precondition for the approval of the EU's next seven-year budget. I urge the Parliament and the Council to take up their responsibility. 00:00:36
10:04:04 Departure of Johannes Hahn 00:00:05
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