EU regional policy is an investment policy. It supports job creation, competitiveness, economic growth, improved quality of life and sustainable development. These investments support the delivery of the Europe 2020 strategy.
Regional policy is also the expression of the EU’s solidarity with less developed countries and regions, concentrating funds on the areas and sectors where they can make the most difference.
Regional policy aims to reduce the significant economic, social and territorial disparities that still exist between Europe's regions. Leaving these disparities in place would undermine some of the cornerstones of the EU, including its large single market and its currency, the euro.
During the period 2007-2013, the EU will invest a total of €347 billion in Europe's regions.
The funding helps, for example, to improve transport and internet links to remote regions, boost small and medium-sized enterprises in disadvantaged areas, invest in a cleaner environment and improve education and skills. EU funding is also invested in innovation, developing new products and production methods, energy efficiency and tackling climate change.
Regional Disparities across EU27
GDP/head (PPS), 2005