Brussels, 6 August 2014
European Commission adopts ‘Partnership Agreement’ with Romania on using EU Structural and Investment Funds for growth and jobs in 2014-2020
The European Commission has adopted a "Partnership Agreement" with Romania setting down the strategy for the optimal use of European Structural and Investment Funds throughout the country. Today’s agreement paves the way for investing €23 billion in total Cohesion Policy funding over 2014-2020 (current prices, including European Territorial Cooperation funding and the allocation for the Youth Employment Initiative). Romania also receives €8 billion for rural development and €168 million for fisheries and the maritime sector.
The EU investments will help tackle unemployment and boost competitiveness and economic growth through support to innovation, training and education in cities, towns and rural areas. They will also promote entrepreneurship, fight social exclusion and help to develop an environmentally friendly and a resource-efficient economy.
The European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) are:
Commenting on the adoption, Commissioner for Regional Policy, Johannes Hahn said: "Today we have adopted a vital, strategic investment plan that sets Romania on the path to jobs and growth for the next 10 years. This Partnership Agreement reflects the European Commission and Romania's joint determination to make the most efficient use of EU funding –Our investments must be strategic, according to the new Cohesion Policy- focusing on the real economy, on sustainable growth and investing in people. But quality not speed is the paramount aim and in the coming months we are fully dedicated to negotiating the best possible outcome for investments from the European Structural and Investment Funds in 2014-2020. Commitment is needed on all sides to ensure good quality programmes are put in place.”
Commissioner Hahn added: "This investment strategy builds on the important contribution Romania is already making to help the EU meet its goals of smart growth, social inclusion and mitigation of climate change. Romania now has a firm base in this Partnership Agreement that covers all Structural and Investment Funds and gives strategic direction to future programmes that will enhance innovation, transform Romanian SMEs into models of growth, and secure Romania's competitive situation in growing sectors like ICT, energy, engineering, nano-technologies or bio-economy. The ESI Funds are helping Romania's regions and cities to face these challenges."
Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Dacian Cioloş said:
''With the adoption of the Partnership Agreement we have achieved an important step in creating the strategic framework for a successful implementation of all European Structural Investment Funds in Romania. I hope that the improved coordination between the Funds will be reflected by an increased efficiency and synergy in the implementation of programmes, more value for money for the invested EU funds and a tangible positive impact for Romania's economy and for its citizens. It is important that the benefits of economic growth and job creation are delivered not only in cities, but also in the countryside, where all Structural and Investment Funds can work better now through improved tools. I also welcome the fact that the Romanian rural development programme has already been submitted to the Commission and is currently under examination. It will be one of the largest rural development programmes in the EU and, if funds are used wisely and implemented well, will provide opportunities for farmers and rural stakeholders to address the challenges they face. Accompanied by the reformed Common Agricultural Policy, the rural development funding offers numerous tools to develop and diversify the Romanian rural economy, increasing its competitiveness and improving at the same time the management of natural resources''.
Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, László Andor said:
"I congratulate Romania for its efforts to finalise the Partnership Agreement and thank the Romanian authorities for their constructive co-operation with the Commission. In the 2014-20 period, €4.77 billion will be available from the European Social Fund to help Romania to increase employment and reduce poverty in line with the Europe 2020 targets and the EU's country-specific recommendations. The key priorities selected by Romania for ESF support include youth employment, improving the labour-market relevance of vocational education and training, addressing poverty and social exclusion of the Roma minority and improving efficiency and quality in public administration and the judiciary".
Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, Maria Damanaki said:
"As with all of the other funds, the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund is about investing and creating jobs in local communities. In Romania, the fund will support projects to reduce the impact of fishing on the marine environment. It will also help to diversify the fisheries and aquaculture products that are currently being produced. In the spirit of the new Common Fisheries Policy, ‘Brussels’ will not prescribe how every single cent should be spent; but let those in Romania who know their craft, industry, and regions best to work towards a sustainable future".
MEMO on Partnership Agreements and Operational Programmes