Austria, France and the Netherlands will receive an additional €119.9 million under REACT-EU for their European Social Fund (ESF) operational programs to support young people, workers, applicants for employment and other people in need, including people fleeing Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine.
In Austria, €25.6 million will continue to support young people and those who have lost their jobs due to the pandemic, bringing the total amount of REACT-EU funding for ESF measures in Austria to €114.2 millions of euros. Other measures will also help in-school students, people transitioning from school to work and people at risk of dropping out of education and vocational training early.
In France, Reunion will receive an additional €34.3 million to help more than 25,000 people obtain quality jobs (for example, through support for entrepreneurship and business creation) and to acquire the skills needed for a green and digital economy. The program will also support the most vulnerable people affected by the pandemic. To date, France has received €1.06 billion in REACT-EU funding.
In the Netherlands, an additional €60 million will help vulnerable groups, including people fleeing Russian aggression, to access the labor market through specific projects set up by Dutch regions and the Dutch public service for 'use. For the Netherlands, the amount already allocated is 280 million euros.
What is REACT-EU?
REACT-EU is one of NextGenerationEU's largest programs, amounting to €50.6 billion. This is a complement to the 2014-2020 programs and a supplement to the funding allocations of the 2021-2027 cohesion policy. The 2021 tranche of REACT-EU had already allocated €40 billion to help Member States recover from the pandemic, invest in the digital and green transition and now welcome and integrate people fleeing war in Ukraine.
In addition, the Commission has provided €3.5 billion in pre-financing payments to Member States under REACT-EU since March 2022. The most recent comprehensive package 'Flexible Assistance to Territories (FAST-CARE)', proposed by the Commission, further extends support to Member States by providing greater flexibility in Cohesion Policy funding while ensuring that pre-financing payments are increased by an additional €3.5 billion to be paid in 2022 and 2023 The eligibility deadline for these expenses is 31 December 2023.