The financial execution of Structural Funds
(18 July 2011)
This Regional Focus contributes to the debate on the financial absorption of Structural Funds. It analyses the functioning of Structural Funds' financial execution and outlines the limitations in the use of financial indicators for assessing the implementation of Cohesion Policy on the ground. It shows that the long term trend of ERDF and ESF payments per capita is fairly stable considering the last 15 years of Cohesion Policy's implementation. This confirms the stability of Cohesion Policy's investments at aggregate level, with no gaps even in years characterized by the ending of a programming period and the beginning of a new one. The paper also examines the 2007-2013 dynamic up to 2010, with the identification of current challenges in financial execution.