25/07/2013 at 12:00
Where: Brussels, Belgium
Topic: Regions and local development
Organiser: European Commission
On 25 July 2013, Commissioner for Regional Policy, Johannes Hahn, will present the Commission’s proposal to amend the EU Solidarity Fund Regulation in order to significantly improve the functioning of the instrument. The proposal is expected to be adopted on Friday by the Commission as a formal legislative proposal. The main aim of the proposal is to facilitate faster and simpler use of the fund. Subject to approval from the European Parliament and Member States, the new legislation would mean more rapid payments of the aid, as well as introduction of advance payments, that Commission could make upon request. This would allow for a quicker reaction and presence in the areas affected by disasters. It's also designed to clarify eligibility, particularly in the case of regional disasters and to encourage Member States to implement more effective disaster risk prevention measures. The principles of the fund remain unchanged as do its financing method outside the normal EU budget.
The European Union Solidarity Fund (EUSF) was set up in 2002 to enable the EU to respond to major natural disasters. The Fund was created as a reaction to the severe floods in Central Europe in the summer of 2002. It grants financial aid to Member States and accession countries affected by major natural disasters.
Since then, it has been used for 52 disasters covering a range of different catastrophic events including floods, forest fires, earthquakes, storms and drought. 23 different European countries have been supported so far.
On 6 October 2011, the Commission published a Communication on the Future of the Solidarity Fund. The amending regulation for the European Solidarity Fund will be presented by the Commission on 25 July. It will then be transmitted to the European Parliament and Council for adoption.
Thursday 25 July at 12:00, Midday, BERLAYMONT
Press Statement by EU Commissioner Johannes Hahn presenting the Commission proposal amending the EU Solidarity Fund Regulation. Experts from the DG will also be present after the presentation in case of technical questions.
A press release (IP) will be published via RAPID: http://europa.eu/rapid/search.htm