PRESS RELEASE ISSUED BY THE PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARIAT FOR THE EU PRESIDENCY 2017 AND EU FUNDS: Parliamentary Secretary Ian Borg meets Vice President Katainen, Commissioner for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness

Parliamentary Secretary Ian Borg paid a courtesy visit to Vice President Katainen, Commissioner for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness. The meeting was held at the Vice President’s office in the European Commission’s Headquarters in Brussels.

Vice President Katainen and Parliamentary Secretary Borg held an exchange of views on the European economy, mainly the importance of the creation of jobs and growth in the EU. Parliamentary Secretary Borg acknowledged that the European Fund for Strategic Investment (EFSI), better known as the Juncker Plan, is bearing its positive effects on the European economy after its implementation, especially in mobilising private investment within the EU. Parliamentary Secretary Borg recalled how Malta’s unemployment rate, across all age brackets, dropped in the past four years, so much so that it topped the EU’s statistics.

Borg explained that the European Structural and Investment Funds are important instruments for countries to converge and to mobilise public investment, especially in troubled periods of sluggish economic growth experienced as a result of the financial crisis. Vice President Katainen commended Malta’s initiative to set up a national development bank, and suggested to use it for the mobilisation of additional EFSI investments in Malta, such as large infrastructure projects.

Parliamentary Secretary Borg welcomed the Commissioner’s proposal of using the national development bank to promote projects under EFSI, and said that the Maltese government’s vision is to explore the idea of using the plan for large infrastructure projects, especially in the area of transportation systems in Malta, ideally engaging in Public Private Partnerships.

Source: Government of Malta