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Spain could lose 37,400 million in European funds after the "brexit"

The continuity of European cohesion funds, equivalent to one third of the total budget, is at issue in the preparation of the next Community financial framework after the "brexit" and, if there is a cut in this item, Spain could stop receiving 37,400 million euros.

Brussels, Nov 16 (EFE) .- The continuity of the European cohesion funds, equivalent to one third of the total budget, are in question for the preparation of the next framework financial community after the "brexit" and, if there is a cut in this item, Spain could stop receiving 37,400 million euros.

This is indicated by an internal document prepared by the Department of Regional Policy of the European Commission (EC) to which Efe had access, in which three possible scenarios are proposed for the European budget under this heading after 2020: a cut of 30%, a cut of 15% and the continuity of the current situation.

In the scenario of a cut in the cohesion funds of 30%, the furthest from the situation At present, the money available would be allocated exclusively to the Member States considered "least developed", which under the current criteria would be the Eastern, Greek and Portugal.

Spain would lose all of the cohesion funds it receives in the period between 2014 and 2020, some 37,400 million euros, which devotes, among other aspects, to strengthening the entry into the labor market, promote social integration and provide facilities for SMEs to access financing.

In the same situation would be countries like France, Germany, Belgium, Holland and Italy.

The panorama that proposes a cut of 15% in this game is not flattering for most of the Spanish autonomous communities, because this scenario implies that only regions with a per capita GDP lower than 75% of the European average would receive Community financial support from this program.

Only Andalucía, Castilla-La Mancha, Murcia and Extremadura meet this criterion, while regions in transition (Galicia, Asturias, Cantabria, La Rioja, Valencia and the Balearic Islands, with GDP between 75% and 90% of the average European Union) and the most developed ones (Madrid, Catalonia, Aragon, Navarra and the Basque Country, with a GDP higher than 90% of the European average) would no longer be eligible for this aid.

The scenario maintains the current budget for the cohesion chapter would allow all autonomous communities to continue to have access to these funds.

Under this assumption, the Commission could update the criteria used to measure whether a region is considered "in transition", which would be any territory with a GDP per capita between 75 and 100% of the European average, compared to the range between 75 and 90% applied today.

This is the first time that the European Commission puts concrete figures on the impact it could have on the next budget European exit from the United Kingdom, which will leave a hole of 16% in the community accounts, and the arrival of new spending priorities, such as the launch of a common defense or new strategies to manage immigration.

The EU budget currently accounts for 1% of the wealth generated by the twenty-eight Member States each year, but the Commission It estimates that in order to preserve the most important current policies and address new challenges this percentage should rise to 1.2%.

Although the chapters in which the Possible cuts after 2020 are not yet official, the European Committee of the Regions (CoR), which represents local authorities across the EU, has been the Alliance for Cohesion.

This initiative gathers the support of mayors, regional presidents and MEPs to the cohesion policy, the "main investment instrument in the EU" that it must remain "a pillar in the community budget after 2020," they explain.

CoR President Karl-Heinz Lambertz said in a statement his "concern" for the possible cuts in this policy and pointed out that they would have "devastating effects" on the social, economic and territorial cohesion of Europe.

"Europe's success is to ensure that every citizen in every region, city and town benefits from the Union. Lambertz after participating in the European social summit in Gothenburg (Sweden).

The Commission is expected to present its proposal on the future of cohesion policy, together with the rest of part of the European budget for the seven-year period between 2021 and 2027, in May 2018.

Laura Zornoza

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