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The ESF in the news

The contribution of ESIF to jobs and growth


chart depicting ESIF budget by Fund
© European Union

Today, the Commission adopted a Communication on the contribution of the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESI Funds) to the EU's growth strategy, the Investment Plan and the Commission's priorities over the next decade.

In 2014-2020, €454 billion from the EU budget - €637 billion with national co-financing included - will be invested in Europe's cities and regions through more than 500 ESI Funds programmes.

The ESI Funds are an important part of public investments in the EU; between 2014 and 2016, the ESI Funds are expected to account for approximately 14% of total public investment on average, and to reach up to 70% in some countries.

By 2023, the ESIFs will deliver a critical mass of investment in key EU priority areas, to respond to the needs of the real economy by supporting job creation and by getting the European economy growing again in a sustainable way. For example, the Member States have committed to the following:

  • More than 2 million enterprises will be supported across the funds to increase their competitiveness, develop products, find new markets and create new jobs.
  • Crucially, the Funds will invest in the skills and adaptability of Europe’s workforce, giving tens of millions of people, including young people, opportunities to (re)train or start businesses. Such opportunities will also be available for refugees and legal migrants.
  • Investment in infrastructure will help Member States to improve peoples’ lives and the competitiveness of their business environment. This is especially the case for the less developed Member States, who will be able to catch up with the more developed ones. Better access to quality broadband and Information and Communication Technology (ICT) services and improved water supply for tens of millions of Europeans are just a few examples of what the ESI Funds are expected to achieve.

Reformed for the 2014-2020 period, the ESI Funds have a clear focus on four key growth-generating sectors: research & innovation, digital technologies, the support to the low-carbon economy and to small businesses. Performance-oriented and in line with the European Semester and Country Specific Recommendations, ESI Funds investments will establish the right conditions for quality projects to flourish, for businesses to thrive and for the people's everyday life to improve, all leading to a new start in Europe.

As foreseen by the Article 16 of the Common Provisions Regulation, today's Communication presents the main results of the negotiations between Member States, their partners, including regional and local actors, and the Commission on the Partnership Agreements and the programmes.

To ensure maximum transparency for the public, the Commission has launched a new Open Data Platform for ESI Funds to show the progress in the implementation of ESI Funds programmes.