Monday, December 11, 2023

EU funds fail due to lack of consensus

“What would you do if you were the president of the Government and had 200,000 million euros to manage?” at speed, Juan Bravothe Deputy Secretary General of the Economy of the Popular Party, reviewed the management of the Next Generation Funds during his participation in the II OKLÍDERES Economic Forum.

For the former Minister of Finance and European Financing of the Government of Andalusia, the projects to be financed by the 210,000 million euros received by Spain in general “failed in their implementation and in the objectives set” by the Executive that he led. – acting- Pedro Sánchez.

In his speech, the head of the Popular Party’s Economy, clarified in the addendum that the Addendum to the Spanish Recovery Plan to mobilize all the Next Generation European funds until 2026 (approved in Brussels earlier this month) was made for two reasons:

The first: “Europe is putting a lot of money in Spain because Spain is growing less than Europe expected and that’s why the European Union is injecting a lot of money.” The second reason comes from the fact that in Spain “we are not able to meet the milestones.”

The former advisor to the Junta de Andalucía explained the great administrative difficulties and the lack of personal and technical resources that companies interested in developing projects that can obtain European financing will find.

There is no desire for consensus

The Next Generation funds, he said, are “the opportunity that the country has” to face challenges such as water, housing, energy, transportation, industry, jobs and new jobs…” After remembering that the contribution from Brussels (140,000 million between non-refundable contributions and soft loans) added to other European funds increasing the amount of money Spain will receive up to 210,000 million euros to renew “It affects Spain a lot because Spain is worse,” he said.

The mobilization of this large sum of money and the impact of the projects to be financed in Brussels, he added, “is something that affects the State, in Autonomous Communitylas Deputations, Town councils and the private sector». For this reason, the management of funds “must be done with consensus… And that is the problem of this Government,” he said.

The Deputy Secretary General of the Economy of the PP assured the II OKLÍDERES Economic Forum that “the funds did not reach the companies. “We can say how many intend to receive them – he added – but not who received them.” Recalled of Bravo the visit that the president of the Budget Committee of the European Union, Monika Hohlmeierwent to Madrid accompanied by a group of MEPs to, as Bravo indicated, “ask where the money is.”

As he noted, “other countries are looking for co-governance, they are turning to the private sector … not here.” However, as pointed out by the II OKLÍDERES Economic Forum, the lack of will of the socialists means that the Royal Decree that should simplify the management and control system of the projects financed by these funds, “requires 28 months with extensions of changes that will become law and enable simplification of procedures.

On the side of the implementation of the projects, Juan Bravo insisted, “no importance is given to its implementation, the Autonomous Communities are blamed,” but despite their insistence, the last Sectoral Coordination Conference was held in August 2021 with acting Minister. in Financial and Public Affairs María Jesús Montero.

He remembers the data of Foundation for Applied Studies (Fedea) which estimates that during 2021 27% of the budget can be implemented; 24% in 2022 and that, in 2023, “we are at 9%, in the best scenario.” To ensure that: “The money is in the accounts, it is not in the Economy.”

PP suggestions

The Popular Party, as it pointed out to the OKLÍDERES audience, suggested that the funds be urgently reorganized because the deadlines of the Government are not true. It also proposes that the distribution of European funds be streamlined with tax incentives and deductions. Among them, Bravo proposed that deductions be applied for the same amount that the EU spends on projects (40%).

In this, PP raised the need to add other incentives that encourage companies to implement projects. “We will give them freedom in amortization so that companies can recover 25% of the investment.” A measure that may be compatible with the payment terms offered by Brussels: until 2058 (35-year term).

Juan Bravo insisted on the need to use “co-governance” models that allow regional presidents, mayors, provincial councils and the private sector to participate. In addition, the Andalusian deputy called for the creation of “a transparent digital platform to know what has been done with our money.”

The head of the economy of the Popular Party examined the changes included by the acting Executive of Pedro Sánchez in the Addendum to the Recovery Plan: “they should request the change of 52 milestones and objectives” and expand “all deadlines because almost none of them are met,” he added.

During his participation in OKLÍDERES, Juan Bravo identified some of these reductions in objectives:

  • Houses to be rehabilitated: they fell from the initial 510,000 to 410,000
  • Purchase of electric vehicles by the Administration: They range from 7,000 to 5,500
  • Digital skills training: from a formation of 450,000 people it decreased to 300,000
  • Locations of residences and day centers: The initial creation (22,360 places) was reduced to 15,200

To quickly conclude that “in front of that, we have to change the Government, but if we change we have a great opportunity: more than 210,000 million euros to change our country, for the elderly, for the young -on, that generation that someone is just living in crisis and we deserve to leave him in a country that is doing well.

World Nation News Desk
World Nation News Desk
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