The Commission presented the next steps for the Recovery and Resilience Facility, which will provide funds to EU countries. This will provide a total of €672.5 billion of loans and grants to support investment and reforms across EU countries. Grants worth a total of €312.5 billion will be provided, while the remaining €360 billion will be provided in loans. The Facility is the key recovery instrument at the heart of the Recovery Fund that is aimed at supporting the EU to recover from the COVID-19 crisis.
National recovery plans will have to be aligned with the green and digital transitions. Moreover, the reforms and investments will have to respect the ‘do no harm’ principle, and use the EU Taxonomy Regulation. EU countries are requested to include in their plans the following areas:
- Power up – The frontloading of future-proof clean technologies and acceleration of the development and use of renewables.
- Renovate – The improvement of energy efficiency of public and private buildings.
- Recharge and Refuel – The promotion of future-proof clean technologies to accelerate the use of sustainable, accessible and smart transport, charging and refuelling stations and extension of public transport.
- Connect – The fast rollout of rapid broadband services to all regions and households, including fiber and 5G networks.
- Modernise – The digitalisation of public administration and services, including judicial and healthcare systems.
- Scale-up – The increase in European industrial data cloud capacities and the development of the most powerful, cutting edge, and sustainable processors.
- Reskill and upskill – The adaptation of education systems to support digital skills and educational and vocational training for all ages.
The Commission has called on the European Parliament and Council of the EU to agree as soon as possible on the legislative proposal to make the funding operational from January 2021. Once approved, Member States will have time until end-April 2021 to submit their draft plans. The announcement also includes a break-down by country on the grant allocation (see here).
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