PRESS RELEASE BY THE PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARIAT FOR EUROPEAN FUNDS AND SOCIAL DIALOGUE: Government in favour of MEP elections deadline for EU budget agreements

Agreement, at least in principle, with the European Parliament on the EU Budget should be sought before the MEP elections in May 2019 in order to avoid a situation where the start of the new funding programmes for 2021-2027 would be delayed, to the detriment of our citizens and businesses.

Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds and Social Dialogue Aaron Farrugia said that if agreement in principle is not reached before the European Parliament elections of May 2019, previous work done in Council could be put in jeopardy, as the priorities of the European Parliament might change considerably.

The Parliamentary Secretary was addressing entrepreneurs during a public discussion on the EU budget organised by the Malta Business Bureau and the European Commission Representation in Malta.

He explained that although as per the Commission’s proposals, Cohesion Policy and the Common Agricultural Policy remained the largest policy areas that will together absorb around 60% of the EU Budget, the Commission proposed significant cuts to both of these policy areas in view of Brexit and new priorities such as migration, defence, and security.

Government welcomes the increased focus on migration and border management. However we believe that EU resources in this area could be uitilised more efficiently and where they are needed the most, if a greater portion is managed by the member states themselves, said the Parliamentary Secretary.

The negotiations in the European Council are taking place mostly at a technical level, and a clearer picture of the progress which can be achieved in the first quarter of 2019 will be revealed at the end of this year during the European Council meeting in December.

The objective of the Cohesion Fund is to reduce social and economic disparities and to promote sustainable development. In this regard, Malta’s economic success in recent years must be taken into consideration in EU funding post-2020 as well as Brexit, and new priorities at European level will have an impact on Malta’s budgetary allocation.

Despite Malta’s unprecedented economic growth, it is nonetheless facing a number of challenges in the areas of environment and innovation, amongst others, and therefore still needs support through EU funding.

EU funds are still needed to consolidate and sustain, not halt or hinder, the economic growth which Malta has experienced in recent years. In this regard, government is undertaking the necessary processes with a view to be in a position to negotiate the best possible package for Malta.

During the last seven years, businesses have significantly benefited both directly and indirectly from EU funding, as they have directly participated in various schemes and programmes supported through structural funds such as Business Enhance and the SME initiative.

Maltese businesses benefited from cash grants aimed at improving their competitiveness and improve their effective participation in the single market.

In addition, businesses have also indirectly benefited from various EU funded initiatives through the actual implementation of various projects supported through EU funds.

Farrugia explained that in the next programming period, the Single Market will remain a priority.

It is therefore clear that the EU Budget needs to continue to ensure that businesses can effectively participate within the Single Market, including through investment in research, development and the low carbon economy.

Source: Government of Malta


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PRESS RELEASE BY THE PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARIAT FOR EUROPEAN FUNDS AND SOCIAL DIALOGUE: Government in favour of MEP elections deadline for EU budget agreements

Agreement, at least in principle, with the European Parliament on the EU Budget should be sought before the MEP elections in May 2019 in order to avoid a situation where the start of the new funding programmes for 2021-2027 would be delayed, to the detriment of our citizens and businesses.

Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds and Social Dialogue Aaron Farrugia said that if agreement in principle is not reached before the European Parliament elections of May 2019, previous work done in Council could be put in jeopardy, as the priorities of the European Parliament might change considerably.

The Parliamentary Secretary was addressing entrepreneurs during a public discussion on the EU budget organised by the Malta Business Bureau and the European Commission Representation in Malta.

He explained that although as per the Commission’s proposals, Cohesion Policy and the Common Agricultural Policy remained the largest policy areas that will together absorb around 60% of the EU Budget, the Commission proposed significant cuts to both of these policy areas in view of Brexit and new priorities such as migration, defence, and security.

Government welcomes the increased focus on migration and border management. However we believe that EU resources in this area could be uitilised more efficiently and where they are needed the most, if a greater portion is managed by the member states themselves, said the Parliamentary Secretary.

The negotiations in the European Council are taking place mostly at a technical level, and a clearer picture of the progress which can be achieved in the first quarter of 2019 will be revealed at the end of this year during the European Council meeting in December.

The objective of the Cohesion Fund is to reduce social and economic disparities and to promote sustainable development. In this regard, Malta’s economic success in recent years must be taken into consideration in EU funding post-2020 as well as Brexit, and new priorities at European level will have an impact on Malta’s budgetary allocation.

Despite Malta’s unprecedented economic growth, it is nonetheless facing a number of challenges in the areas of environment and innovation, amongst others, and therefore still needs support through EU funding.

EU funds are still needed to consolidate and sustain, not halt or hinder, the economic growth which Malta has experienced in recent years. In this regard, government is undertaking the necessary processes with a view to be in a position to negotiate the best possible package for Malta.

During the last seven years, businesses have significantly benefited both directly and indirectly from EU funding, as they have directly participated in various schemes and programmes supported through structural funds such as Business Enhance and the SME initiative.

Maltese businesses benefited from cash grants aimed at improving their competitiveness and improve their effective participation in the single market.

In addition, businesses have also indirectly benefited from various EU funded initiatives through the actual implementation of various projects supported through EU funds.

Farrugia explained that in the next programming period, the Single Market will remain a priority.

It is therefore clear that the EU Budget needs to continue to ensure that businesses can effectively participate within the Single Market, including through investment in research, development and the low carbon economy.

Source: Government of Malta


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