Tag Archives: regional aid

Excessive Deficit May Prompt Suspension of Regional Aid?

The European Commission considers suspending structural funds for states which are regularly in breach of the EU’s stability and growth pact. An additional criterion being considered is a public debt ratio above 60% of GDP. The Commission also plans to deepen and broaden budgetary surveillance in the future.

I can follow the logic of the Commission in desiring to impose a budget discipline in the EU, but I am particularly worried about Bulgaria. As we already know, there probably will be an excessive deficit procedure against Bulgaria for 2009 and possibly for 2010. True, the gross public debt is relatively small. But even now we face substantial problems in using the structural funds. Any further restriction or suspension of regional aid by the Commission can be devastating for a country that simply is not competitive enough on the EU markets.

Post-2013 EU Budget Overhaul?

The EU Observer says that the first principle draft of EU budgeting post-2013 shows significant changes in budget priorities. Agricultural and regional aid in its current form is significantly reduced. Regional aid for wealthy Member States is scrapped to a large extent. Jobs, climate change and foreign policy are the three priorities in the budget draft.