Council Conclusions on Cohesion Policy
12 December 2022 (updated 3 months, 3 weeks ago)
2018-Max_Planck_Herr_Wahl_1355_black white_Zuschnitt.jpg Thomas Wahl

On 22 November 2022, the Council adopted conclusions on cohesion policy. The conclusions provide a general assessment of the role of cohesion policy in fostering regional development throughout the EU, deal with the main implementation challenges, and give guidance on the way forward.

Considering that expenditure for cohesion is traditionally the biggest part of the EU budget, the Council reminds that cohesion policy is the main policy focused on the socio-economic development of EU regions striving to decrease disparities among them as set out in Art. 174 TFEU.

The Council highlights the added value of cohesion policy, which is, according to the conclusions, agile, modern and long-term, and has an important leverage effect, generating an estimated €2.7 of additional GDP at the EU level for each €1 spent. The shared management as a key feature for the effective implementation of cohesion policy and its positive impacts are also emphasised. In addition, policy considerations concern the following:

  • The 2014-2020 programming period;
  • Cohesion policy as tailor-made response to recent crises;
  • The 2021-2027 programming period;
  • The territorial aspect of cohesion policy;
  • Cohesion policy post-2027.

Ultimately, the conclusions stress the importance of protecting the financial interests of the EU. Regarding the current 2021-2027 programming period, the Council stresses the importance of preventing and combating fraud and corruption. It calls on the Member States and the Commission to closely cooperate on these topics and to enhance the efficiency of control systems. Moreover, the Commission is called on to continuously substantiate the impact of cohesion policy, determine the impact of cohesion policy investments, and analyse the multiple results of cohesion policy.

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2018-Max_Planck_Herr_Wahl_1355_black white_Zuschnitt.jpg
Thomas Wahl

Max Planck Institute for the Study of Crime, Security and Law (MPI CSL)

Public Law Department

Senior Researcher