Future cohesion policy
Current regional funding programmes will run until 2013. Options for cohesion policy after 2014 are already being discussed. This discussion is linked to the broader context of the EU budget and the Europe 2020 strategy.
Legislative proposals for cohesion policy during the period 2014-2020 were adopted by the European Commission on 6 October 2011. These will be discussed by the Council and European Parliament during 2012-2013. The new Regulations should enter into force in 2014.
Documents related to the Legislative proposals :
Common Strategic Framework
Following the Cohesion Policy proposals of 6th October, and to help Member States prepare for the next programming period, the Commission presented on 14 March 2012 the "Common Strategic Framework" (CSF). It is intended to help in setting strategic direction for the next financial planning period from 2014 to 2020 in Member States and their regions. It will enable a far better combining of various funds to maximise the impact of EU investments. National and regional authorities will use this framework as the basis for drafting their 'Partnership Contracts' with the Commission, committing themselves to meeting Europe's growth and jobs targets for 2020.
Staff Working document on the Common Strategic Framework :
European Code of Conduct on Partnership
Partnership principle in the implementation of the CSF Funds – elements for a European Code of Conduct on Partnership (Staff Working Document)
Comments on the SDW on the European Code of Conduct on Partnership may be sent to the European Commission to the e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org
Read the Comments on the European Code of Conduct on Partership
Delegated acts, implementing acts and guidance
An overview on the on-going discussion related to the preparation of delegated acts, implementing acts and guidance for the European Structural and Investment Funds 2014-2020. The expert meetings provide a forum for informal consultation of experts on the approaches taken to regulation and guidance in various areas.
Programming process 2014-2020
Position of the Commission Services on the development of Partnership Agreement and programmes
The position papers inform the Member States of the Commission Services' views on the main challenges and funding priorities for 2014-2020 and establish a framework for dialogue.
Based on the lessons learnt during the 2007-2013 programming period and the Commission's legislative proposals for 2014-2020 the Commission Services prepared during 2012 for each Member State a position paper on the development of Partnership Agreement and programmes for the period 2014-2020. The position papers were presented to the Member State authorities as Commission Services' views based on the Commission's legislative proposals, without prejudice to the final outcome of the negotiations on the legislative package. The position papers inform the Member States of the Commission Services' views on the main challenges and funding priorities at an early stage of programming for 2014-2020 and establish a framework for dialogue between the Commission Services and each Member State on preparation of the partnership agreement and programmes which will form the basis for delivery of the EU Structural and Investment Funds.
Options for reform
The Fifth Cohesion Report, adopted in November 2010, set out ideas on how cohesion policy might be reformed, including:
- focusing resources on a few priorities closely linked to the Europe 2020 strategy
- defining clear and measurable targets
- strengthening regulatory and institutional frameworks
- conditionality and incentives
- increasing the leverage effect of investments
- private sector finance
- simplification of the management rules
- concentrating on the poorest Member States and regions
Preparing the reform
A public consultation was held between November 2010 and January 2011 to help shape the future policy and prepare legislative proposals. Representatives of the EU institutions, Member States, regions, economic and social partners, NGOs and academics discussed the orientations for the future at the Fifth Cohesion Forum in January 2011.
Discussions with Member States experts and the relevant actors from the Commission and the other EU institutions were held since 2009. In particular, the High Level Group reflecting on future cohesion policy, an informal expert platform established in 2009, supported the work of the Commission in developing the future directions of cohesion policy. In addition, a specific Task Force was set up in 2010 to discuss the various aspects of conditionality relevant for cohesion policy.
Several policy documents and reports have also made an important contribution to the debate:
- Orientation paper on the future of cohesion policy by former EU Commissioner Samecki (2010)
- Reflection paper on the future of cohesion policy by former EU Commissioner Hübner (2009)
- Barca Report (2009)
- Green paper on territorial cohesion (2009)
- Sixth progress report on economic and social cohesion (2009)
- Fifth progress report on economic and social cohesion (2008)
- Regions 2020 – an assessment of future challenges for EU regions (2008)