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EU Solidarity Fund: Commission moves to help Serbia, Croatia and Bulgaria after May's major floods

EU Commissioner for Regional Policy, Johannes Hahn, has today announced an aid package worth nearly €80 million proposed by the European Commission for Serbia, Croatia and Bulgaria after flooding disasters struck the countries in May and June 2014.

The proposed aid of €60.2m to Serbia, €8.96m to Croatia and €10.5m to Bulgaria is to help cover part of the emergency costs incurred by the public authorities in these three countries due to the disasters. In particular, it will help to restore vital infrastructure and services, reimburse the cost of emergency and rescue operations, and help cover some of the clean-up costs in the disaster-stricken regions.

Serbia, which is currently in negotiations to join the EU - and therefore eligible for the Fund - suffered the worst of the damage. The floods most severely hit the districts of Kolubara, Mačva, Moravcki, Pomoravlje, and part of Belgrade, with detrimental effects for some 1.6 million inhabitants. Essential power links were damaged, while drinking water suffers on-going pollution.

Commissioner Hahn, who oversees the Fund and signed today’s proposal, said "This decision reflects the very nature of this Fund, which is solidarity with our fellow Member States and those counties negotiating accession in their time of need after natural disasters. The European Solidarity Fund helps these countries get back on their feet and regain stability which is threatened by the severe damage to economic sectors such as tourism, or destruction of essential infrastructure. This proposed support will help Serbia, Bulgaria and Croatia to recover from the terrible flooding earlier this year and it will help to reimburse rescue and clean-up costs in the affected regions."

He added: These amounts are specific and targeted to help address the immediate and direct impact of natural disasters. We have now approved these grants at the Commission. We also reformed the EU Solidarity Fund rules which entered into force on 28 June 2014 and simplified the existing system and criteria so that aid can be paid out more rapidly than before. Now we trust member states will also show solidarity and stand by their commitments in swiftly agreeing the funds set aside for this purpose."

More information

Fond solidarity Evropské unie (EUSF) byl zřízen, aby bylo možné v případě přírodních katastrof pomoci postiženým regionům. Jde o jednu z forem solidarity mezi evropskými zeměmi a regiony. Zřízení fondu bylo odezvou na rozsáhlé povodně v zemích střední Evropy, k nimž došlo v létě roku 2002. Od té doby byl fond využit při 63 katastrofách, k nim patřily záplavy, lesní požáry, zemětřesení, bouře i období katastrofálního sucha. Doposud fond podpořil 24 různých evropských zemí částkou přesahující 3.7 miliardy eur. Seznam zásahů naleznete zde: PDF en

Jak o pomoc z fondu zažádat?

Žádost musí Komise obdržet během 12 týdnů ode dne, kdy jste v důsledku dané přírodní katastrofy utrpěli první škody.

Orgán odpovědný za vypracování žádosti by se měl rozhodně spojit s příslušným útvarem GŘ pro regionální politiku, kde může získat různé informace a rady, díky nimž se zpracování žádosti co nejvíce urychlí.

Tato stránka se pravidelně aktualizuje – stáhněte si nejnovější verzi žádosti.

  • Formulář žádosti (Poslední aktualizace: 11-07-2014) Word en
  • Pokyny k vyplnění žádosti Word en
  • Limity pro katastrofy velkého rozsahu PDF en (Poslední aktualizace: 07-01-2015)
  • Limity pro regionální katastrofy PDF en (Poslední aktualizace: 07-01-2015)
  • Jak určit práh u katastrof, které zasáhly několik regionů (na základě váženého průměru HDP) xls en (Poslední aktualizace: 07-01-2015)
  • Jak vysokou finanční pomoc lze očekávat? PDF en

Komise žádost posoudí a v případě jejího přijetí navrhne Evropskému parlamentu a Radě výši podpory, kterou tyto orgány musí před vyplacením schválit. Jakmile budou příslušné prostředky k dispozici v rozpočtu EU, přijme Komise rozhodnutí o udělení pomoci danému státu. Poté je pomoc ihned jednorázově vyplacena. Po vyplacení pomoci příslušný stát zodpovídá za implementaci včetně výběru operací a jejich auditu a kontroly. Nouzová opatření lze financovat zpětně od prvního dne pohromy.

Zde je nutné poznamenat, že EUSF je nástrojem rychlé reakce na krizi vzniklou v důsledku přírodní katastrofy. Finanční pomoc může být danému státu poskytnuta až po předložení žádosti a poté, co proběhlo jednání o rozpočtu, což může trvat i několik měsíců.

Kontaktní osoby

Evropská komise
Generální ředitelství pro regionální a městskou politiku
Unit E1/EUSF
B-1049 Brussels
Belgium
Johannes Wachter
Tel.: +32 2 296 65 15
Andrea Lamprecht
Tel.: +32 2 298 10 68

Další informace English >

In what cases does the EUSF assist?

The EUSFThe EUSF can provide financial aid to Member States and countries engaged in accession negotiations

a. in the event of a 'major disaster': total direct damage exceeding € 3 billion at 2011 prices or 0.6% of the GNI of the affected State, whichever is the lower.
b. in the event for smaller, so-called ‘regional disasters': total direct damage exceeding 1.5% of regional GDP (at NUTS2 level). For outermost regions the threshold of 1% of regional GDP is applied.
c. in the event that an eligible State is affected by the same major disaster as an eligible neighbouring State.

With what budget?

Solidarity Fund aid can be mobilised up to a maximum annual total of € 500 million (in 2011 prices) plus the unspent allocation from the preceding year which is raised over and above the normal EU budget. Individual grants have to be approved by the European Parliament and the Council following a proposal from the Commission. One quarter of this amount must remain available on 1 October of every year to meet possible needs through to the end of the year. In exceptional cases and if the resources remaining for the rest of the year are insufficient, the shortfall may be met out of the next year's budget.

For what actions?

The EUSF

The EUSF supplements Member States' public expenditure for the following essential emergency operations:

  • Immediate restoration to working order of infrastructure and plant in the fields of energy, drinking water, waste water, transport, telecommunications, health and education
  • Providing temporary accommodation and emergency services to meet the immediate needs of the population;
  • Immediate securing of prevention infrastructures and measures to protect the cultural heritage;
  • Cleaning up of disaster-stricken areas, including natural zones.

The EUSF was not set up with the aim of meeting all the costs linked to natural disasters. The Fund is limited in principle to non-insurable damage and does not compensate for private losses. Long-term action – such as lasting reconstruction, economic redevelopment and prevention – are not eligible for EUSF aid. It could, however, qualify for aid under other instruments, most notably the Structural Funds and the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development.

Examples

Austria - Flooding of August 2005 (regional disaster)

In August 2005, heavy flooding occurred in parts of two Austrian Länder Vorarlberg and Tyrol. The flooding caused severe damage to the agricultural sector, to tourism, residential properties and businesses, to the transport network and other infrastructure. The total direct damage was estimated at EUR 591.94 million which represents approximately 0.27 % of Austria's GNI. Since the figure is lower than the applicable threshold for mobilising the Solidarity Fund for major disasters (0.6 % of Austria's GNI, i.e. EUR 1.3363 billion), the application was therefore examined under exceptional criteria for so-called extraordinary regional disasters. The Commission came to the conclusion that the application provided sufficient evidence to allow exceptionally mobilising the Solidarity Fund and to grant financial aid amounting to EUR 14.79 million. The aid was used for:

  1. the immediate restoration to working order of infrastructure, in particular in restoration of state roads. Total EUSF contribution: EUR 9.86 million.
  2. the immediate securing of preventive infrastructures, in particular of restoration of damaged embankments of water courses, including the removal of trees and rubble, damming, stabilisation and restoration of river beds. Total EUSF contribution: EUR 4.93 million.

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