The Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions (CPMR) has published today a detailed analysis on the impact of potential budgetary cuts on Cohesion policy at country level.

The analysis makes the case for an ambitious budget for post-2020 Cohesion policy to ensure that the EU continues to support its goals of cohesion, solidarity and investment in all EU regions.

The CPMR analysis looks at the impact of the budgetary cuts at country level envisaged in DG REGIO’s internal paper, leaked some weeks ago to the press.

The DG REGIO paper contemplates cuts of 15% and 30% to the Cohesion policy budget. In the first scenario, Cohesion policy would only cover less developed regions and Cohesion countries, and affect net contributors without less developed regions the most, such as Germany (-94%) and Sweden (-77%).

In the second scenario in the DG REGIO paper, which would only cover Cohesion countries, net contributors, and especially Italy (-97%), would take major losses. Interreg programmes would be maintained for all members states in both cases.

The paper also shows the detailed budget impact of a possible 10% cut applied horizontally to all EU Member states, as suggested by Commissioner Oettinger on 23 November before the European Parliament’s committee on regional development. In this case, all European Regions would be covered, but the scope of the policy will be much more limited.

Lastly, the analysis contemplates the impact of the removal of the European Social Fund from Cohesion policy. This scenario follows one of the ideas of the internal paper prepared by DG EMPL which suggests the creation of a Human Capital Fund encompassing all DG EMPL managed funds. Again, net contributors would lose out the most, particularly those comprised of more developed regions.

In its position paper adopted last June, the CPMR made it clear that Cohesion policy should cover all regions in the post-2020 period and that the European Social Fund should remain a key component of Cohesion policy in the future.

The European Commission is expected to publish its proposal for the next multiannual financial framework for the post-2020 period by May 2018.