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Commissioner Hahn and Portuguese ministers agree a special working group to develop plans for next period

(01 October 2013)

Commissioner Hahn and Portuguese ministers agree a special working group to develop plans for next period

Commissioner Hahn met today Portuguese Minister and State Secretary for Regional Development Miguel Poiares Maduro and Manuel Castro Almeida and State Secretary for European Affairs Bruno Maçães. Main topic of discussion was the planning for the future period as regards cohesion policy and how the investments will be used.

The Commissioner welcomed the recent arrival of the draft partnership agreement from Portugal which will set out strategy for use of funds. At the meeting both sides agreed to step up preparations through an informal working group to focus funds in key growth areas Commissioner Hahn mentioned that the preparations are well on track and that investments for 2014-2020 have to be focused on Research and Development activities with an economic value for enterprises. He stressed that R&D projects should involve enterprises in order to translate ideas into business and that cohesion policy in the future has to show more impact and results.

The Commissioner further praised the ability of Portugal to absorb funds correctly - it has one if the highest rates in the EU and along with Sweden is only the second Member State to receive a contract of Confidence that requires no regular audits from Brussels.