Approval of the 2021-2027 Association Agreement for Spain to receive €36.682 billion in European funds

News - 2022.11.18

As a result, Spain has a total financial allocation of EU aid of €36.682 billion for all instruments. An agreement that is complementary to the objectives and milestones set out in the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan (PRTR), which drives the transformation of the country's productive model

Of this €36.682 billion, €35.562 billion correspond to EU cohesion policy funds, where Spain is the third largest beneficiary for the period 2021-2027, behind only Poland and Italy. This allocation is split into €23.397 billion from the ERDF, €11.296 billion from the ESF+ and €869 million from the JTF. In addition to these amounts, a total of €1.12 billion is allocated to Spain from the EMFF.

Investment for 2021-2027

Overall, the Association Agreement represents a total investment of €59.722 billion. The sum of the funds included in the Agreement represents an increase of 15% compared to those obtained during the 2014-2020 period.

This investment is organised around five main policy areas, where support for research, digitalisation, support for SMEs, energy efficiency, green transition and social investment are particularly relevant:

  • Policy Objective 1 will have around €8.3 billion of European support to strengthen research, support businesses and encourage the digitisation of our economy.
  • Policy Objective 2 allocates over €9.9 billion to improving energy efficiency, renewable energy deployment, actions to adapt to climate change, the implementation of a circular economy model and focus on biodiversity.
  • Policy Objective 3 has an allocation of €1.2 billion, which focuses on developing rail corridors, ensuring rail accessibility to ports of general interest, supporting the use of clean vehicles and improving public transport services.
  • Within Policy Objective 4, social investment is of particular relevance during the current period, with a focus on employment, education, vocational training, inclusion and the fight against poverty and child poverty. This translates into €12.3 billion of aid for social cohesion under PO4.
  • Finally, Policy Objective 5 sets out European funding for urban and non-urban development actions through designing integrated investment programmes, amounting to over €2.1 billion.

The result of all the above is this Association Agreement, which consolidates the transformation of the production model, initiated with the Recovery Plan, towards a modern, competitive, sustainable, resource-efficient and climate-neutral economy. It will also serve to provide a support and protection network for families and the most vulnerable productive framework.

As the Minister for Treasury and Public Function, María Jesús Montero, explained in parliament, in view of the doubts generated by the opposition about this agreement, the Government of Spain was in constant contact with the European Commission to coordinate the projects to be financed with the cohesion funds. These talks took place within the deadlines set by Brussels, as the Minister pointed out. This shows that at no time were cohesion funds at risk.

Next steps

On the basis of the strategic lines defined in the Agreement, the Programmes financed with these funds are expected to be approved in the near future, specifying the types of actions to be financed, in accordance with the following structure:

  • ERDF will have an allocation of €23.397 billion distributed over 19 regional programmes and one multi-regional programme.
  • ESF will provide €11.296 billion, spread over 19 regional programmes and 4 multi-regional programmes: Spain's Multi-Regional Programme for Employment, Vocational Training and Education, the Multi-Regional Programme for Youth Employment; the Multi-Regional Programme for Inclusion and the Fight against Poverty and Child Poverty, and the Multi-Regional Programme for Material Deprivation.
  • In turn, the EMFF, with €1.12 billion, and the JTF, with €869 million, will have only one multi-regional programme each.

Non official translation