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European Union Funds

lOGO European Funds: Abre nueva ventana

More than half of EU funds are channelled through the five European Structural and Investment Funds (ESI Funds), which are jointly managed by the European Commission and EU countries. All these funds are used to invest in job creation and in a sustainable and healthy European economy and environment.

ESI Funds are mainly focused on five sectors:

  • Research and innovation.
  • Digital technologies.
  • Low-carbon economy.
  • Sustainable management of natural resources.
  • Small enterprises.

Both the Structural Funds and the Cohesion Fund were created to enhance economic and social cohesion within the European Union through co-funding of public expenditure policies of Member States aimed at attaining such cohesion.

In addition, in 2020, the Recovery and Resilience Mechanism is created to address the severe economic and social crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and to transform European economies by making them greener, more digital and resilient.

For such purpose, the temporary recovery programme NEXT GENERATION EU was designed with an unprecedented 750 billion euros in public resources. Its main item is the Recovery and Resilience Mechanism, valid for a term of six years, from 2021 to 2026, and a total amount of EUR 672.5 billion (EUR 312.5 billion in transfers and EUR 360 billion in low-interest loans).

In order to access funds from the Recovery and Resilience Mechanism, Member States must approve national recovery and resilience plans. In Spain, the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan considers a robust agenda of investments and structural reforms to tackle the crisis through an effective deployment of up to EUR 140 billion in transfers and credits. The Plan is a major national project involving all levels of government: state, regional and local, as well as the private sector. The purpose is to transform our economy to make it greener, more digital, inclusive and cohesive, while increasing its capacity for growth in the medium and long term.

In Spain, coordination of the implementation and management of the Structural Funds and the Recovery Plan is the responsibility of the Ministry of Finance and Public Administration, through the General Secretariat for European Funds, which reports to the State Secretariat for Budgets and Expenditure.

The General Secretariat for European Funds is the management body that shall be responsible, under the authority of the Secretary of State for Budgets and Expenditure, for the management, promotion and coordination of the competencies attributed to the Department in relation to the definition of the Spanish position in the negotiations for the approval and revision of the successive Multiannual Financial Frameworks of the European Union, notwithstanding the coordination competencies attributed in its area to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation, the design, planning, coordination and monitoring of actions related to European funds and their financing and budgetary relations with the European Union, the Cohesion Policy and regional economic policy, the regional incentives policy, the Recovery and Resilience Mechanism and the National Recovery and Resilience Plan, and, in particular, the functions listed below:

  1. Coordination, through the National Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan, of actions funded under the Multiannual Financial Framework and those under the Recovery and Resilience Mechanism, in order to ensure coherence between them.
  2. With regard to the European Commission, overall responsibility for recovery and resilience plans, acting as European Commission contact point, coordinator.
  3. Acting as the authority responsible for the Recovery and Resilience Mechanism before the European institutions, under the terms established in the European regulations, developing for this purpose the competences established by law and regulations.
  4. Coordination with ministries, public bodies, autonomous communities and local entities and other national and community entities involved in the National Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan.
  5. Monitoring progress against the Plan's milestones and targets.
  6. The Member State's functions in relation to the balanced scorecard as provided for in the rules governing the Resilience and Recovery Mechanism.
  7. The submission of the reports foreseen in the regulations governing the Recovery and Resilience Mechanism, of the requests for payment of the financial contribution accompanied by the corresponding statement of assurance and, where appropriate, of the loan tranche foreseen therein, all on the basis of the controls carried out by the IGAE. All of this, on the basis of the results of the controls carried out, under the terms and conditions provided for in the regulations governing the Recovery and Resilience Mechanism.
  8. The leadership of the Technical Committee of the National Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan, coordinating its work.
  9. The technical secretariat functions of the Sectoral Conference of the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan.
  10. The functional design of the computer systems necessary for the management and monitoring of the different European financing instruments under the responsibility of this Secretariat-General; the dialogue with the European Commission and the participating national bodies with regard to the exchange and supply of information, including the definition of exchange norms and standards; planning and coordination in collaboration with the Office of Budgetary Informatics and the rest of the management centres responsible for the technical execution of the different projects; the design and organisation of support and training activities for the resulting systems; as well as those assigned to it, in terms of information systems and technologies, in the management and control systems of the European Funds.

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