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10 questions for debate


In the Second Report on Economic and Social Cohesion, published at the end of January 2001, the European Commission:

  • appraises economic and social cohesion across the European Union during the period 1995-96;
  • assesses the future of cohesion policy and describes the outlook in the light of the substantial changes brought about by the globalisation of the economy and the challenges deriving from enlargement.

In order to launch a genuine debate on the future regional policy of the European Union, the Commission is also asking ten fundamental questions. It is calling on all the stakeholders (Member States, local authorities, local players, experts and European organisations) to turn their attention to this issue and to participate in the specific seminars to be held during the first half of 2002. These ten questions are as follows:

  1. What will be the role of cohesion policy in an enlarged Union of nearly thirty Member States in a context of rapid economic and social change? How is it possible to further economic convergence and preserve the European model of society?
  2. How should Community policies be made more coherent? How should the contribution of other Community policies to the pursuit of cohesion be improved?
  3. How should cohesion policy be modified in preparation for an unprecedented expansion of the Union? Should cohesion policy also address territorial cohesion in order to take better account of the major spatial imbalances in the Union?
  4. How can cohesion policy be focussed on measures which have a high Community added value ?
  5. What should be the priorities to bring about balanced and sustainable territorial development in the Union?
  6. How should the economic convergence of regions which are lagging behind be encouraged?
  7. What kind of Community intervention is required for other regions?
  8. What methods should be used to determine the division of funds between Member States and between regions?
  9. What principles should govern the implementation of Community intervention?
  10. What should be the response to increased needs with regard to the economic, social and territorial dimensions of cohesion?
Last updated: 20.04.2004

See also

For further information on the Second Cohesion Report, see:

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