EU Ministers for Cohesion Policy were to discuss innovations designed at improving the quality of investments by European Structural and Investment Funds (ESI funds) during an Informal Meeting in Vilnius on Nov. 26, reports ELTA.
“The European Commission has submitted proposals to improve the effectiveness of ESI Funds in order to achieve smart, sustainable and inclusive growth across the European Union,” said Rimantas Sadzius, the Lithuanian Finance Minister, who was to chair the event.
The Informal Ministerial meeting is taking place in the light of the approval of the legislative package for Cohesion Policy 2014-2020 by the European Parliament. This decision will give the green light for more than 300 billion euros of investments in all EU countries to be implemented from Jan. 1.
The ministers will discuss Cohesion Policy innovations and solutions aimed at improving the effectiveness and quality of the implementation, while at the same time reducing the administrative burden for potential recipients of support. Four specific topics - the thematic concentration of ESI Funds; ex-ante conditionality to be met by member states to improve the effectiveness of investments; results orientation; and better investment coordination - are proposed by the Presidency to be the focus of discussions.
The Lithuanian EU Council Presidency congratulates the European Parliament on its affirmative vote on the Horizon 2020 at its plenary session in Strasbourg on Nov. 21, reports ELTA.
“Today’s vote by the European Parliament completes the first reading agreement on the Horizon2020 package and paves the way for the timely implementation of the Program. The result is good for researchers, SMEs and for Europe as a whole,” said Minister of Science and Education of Lithuania Dainius Pavalkis.
According to the minister, this program will help deliver on innovation which will be instrumental in securing sustainable growth and in creating new jobs in Europe. He thanked the previous EU Council rotating Presidencies - Denmark, Cyprus and Ireland for their intense work on this legislative package.
In the 2014-2020 Multi-annual Financial Framework, 70.2 billion euros are allocated to the Horizon2020, including Euratom program.
Horizon 2020 provides the main framework for the European Union’s funding for research and innovation activities, strengthens the European science and technology base, is a part of the drive to create new growth and jobs in Europe. Investment in this area also leads to business opportunities by creating innovative products and services.
Final adoption of Horizon 2020 by the Council will take place in early December.