European Parliament approves the Juncker Plan

June 25, 2015

Hat: European Parliament approves the Juncker Plan

Funding Scheme: 2015-06-25

Pgm2014 2020: Yes

Amorce:

On Wednesday 24 June, MEPs approved, with a few modifications, the rules of the investment plan for Europe which was announced in November 2014 by the new European Commission. The Investment Plan for Europe aims to revive investment in strategic projects around Europe by mobilizing 315 billion euro for the period 2015-2017.

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Parliament approved the fund’s rules by 464 votes to 131 with 19 abstentions. The vote marks the end of a rapid legislative process, demonstrating Parliament’s commitment to the plan.

Research and networks budgets shielded
 
Parliament sought to improve the financing structure of the plan’s guarantee fund, the fund’s governance rules, its working arrangements and its democratic accountability. The key achievements were:

• scaling back cuts in the EU’s “Horizon2020” research and innovation programme and Connecting Europe Facility (CEF – to link up Europe’s energy, transport and digital networks) by €1 billion. Horizon 2020 and CEF, two of the three sources of financing for the EU guarantee backing the plan, will now contribute €2.2 billion and €2.8 billion respectively, i.e. €500 million each less than was originally proposed,

• ensuring that the €1 billion salvaged for the programmes will be paid for out of the unused budget margins of 2014 and 2015,

• winning the right for Parliament to approve the appointment of the managing director and the deputy managing director the investment fund,

• stipulating that the list of approved projects will be public, and

• requiring that a set of project selection criteria and a list of project goals be drawn up to ensure that projects selected are in line with the general priorities of the Union.

For all the details on the compromise, please see the background note.

Next steps

Now that Parliament has approved the rules, the Council of Ministers needs to do likewise. The Council confirmed its provisional agreement with Parliament on 9 June and is expected to give its final approval in a written procedure soon. The Juncker Plan regulation then enters into force at the start of July, and the fund is expected to be fully operational by September.

Background

Presented last November, the Juncker Plan aims to create a European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) made up of €5 billion capital from the European Investment Bank (EIB) and a €16 billion guarantee fund. The guarantee fund is, to receive €8 billion from the EU budget, out of which the EIB may be paid in the event of a call on the guarantee. Parliament and Council hammered out a compromise on the Commission’s original proposal in eight three-way meetings between 20 April and 4 June.

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Url: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/en/news-room/content/20150622IPR69218/html/Spurring-economic-recovery-Parliament-approves-Juncker-Plan-rules