The impact of the economic and financial crisis on the reform of Cohesion Policy 2008-2013
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The economic and financial crisis of 2008-2013 triggered fundamental changes in European economic governance: coordination of economic policy (European Semester), strengthened fiscal discipline and surveillance, a new procedure addressing macroeconomic imbalances and reinforced EU-level supervision of the financial sector. This paper will argue that these changes had a profound effect on the reform of Cohesion Policy. The inclusion of macroeconomic conditionality became one of the keys to unlocking the final EU budget deal for 2014-2020 as Cohesion Policy was mobilised to support the EU’s reform agenda in all regions. But the links between the new EU economic governance and Cohesion Policy in the current period go far beyond macroeconomic conditionality. They also include thematic concentration on key EU progrowth priorities, stronger links to the European Semester and its country-specific recommendations as well as ex ante conditionalities to ensure the right framework for Cohesion Policy investment.
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