A stronger and renewed strategic partnership with the EU's outermost regions
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Between 2014 and 2020 the European Structural and Investment Funds and a dedicated scheme on agricultural measures (the POSEI Regulation) provide almost EUR 13.3 billion to the outermost regions - an important source of investments and job creation. This includes two specific allocations in the fields of regional development and fisheries to compensate for the additional costs faced by these regions because of their particular situation.
Furthermore, specific rules apply to the outermost regions in areas such as State aid4, with regard to operating and investments aids, as well as in taxation and customs, to help boost their competitiveness. This significant public support from the EU develops infrastructure, provide services for the population, create jobs, invest in education and skills and increase businesses' competitiveness. It also helps enhance and diversify agricultural activities, preserve the environment and addresses climate change. The accompanying Staff Working Document reviews the implementation of the measures proposed in the 2012 Strategy and provides detailed information on the socio-economic situation of the outermost regions.
Despite the progress that they have made over the years, the outermost regions continue to face serious challenges, which are further amplified by globalisation and by climate change. Their development is fragile. Most of them need to invest in basic infrastructure - such as roads, water and waste management facilities - and their economy depends on a limited number of economic sectors5. Their constraints including remoteness bring additional costs to their companies, primarily small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs), impeding their full participation in the single market.
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