Structural Funds of the European Community

Fonds structurels de la Communauté européenne

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History

Set up within the framework of European Community, within the broad framework first of the European Communities (EC) and now of the European Union (EU) and administered by the European Commission (EC). Currently functioning under revised regulations of July 1993 for 1994-1999. Not an organization but a collective term, originally grouping 3 funds: European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF) (set up 1962) and replaced by European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF) (2007); European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) (set up 1975); European Social Fund (ESF) (set up 1957). Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance (FIFG) was added in 1993 and in 2007 replaced by European Fisheries Fund (EFF). The Cohesion Fund, established 7 Feb 1992, commenced normal operations 16 May 1994, while not a Structural Fund as such, it supports structural development by assisting transport and environmental infrastructure projects. In addition, the European Investment Bank (EIB) uses loans to provide for economic and social cohesion. Collective noun ceased to exist, when European Community ceased to exist, 2009.

Aims

Provide the principal means through which the Community supports efforts of member states to achieve greater economic and social cohesion and ensure more equal access to benefits resulting from closer economic integration by: reducing disparities in living standards, infrastructure endowment and employment opportunities between the most advanced and least developed regions of the Community; improving the access to jobs of disadvantaged social groups and helping workers adapt to industrial change. Principles (4): 'concentration' on priority objectives; an approach based on medium-term 'strategic programming'; decentralized decisions taken through 'partnership' arrangements, involving close collaboration between the Commission and appropriate national, regional or local authorities; 'additionality', such that Community assistance complements rather than replaces member states' own efforts. Objectives in force for 2000-2006: Objective 1 - Promoting development and structural adjustment of regions whose development is lagging behind. Objective 2 - Supporting economic and social conversion of areas facing structural difficulties. Objective 3 - Supporting adaptation and modernization of policies and systems of education, training and employment; this objective to provide financial assistance outside regions covered by Objective 1 and provide a policy frame of reference for all measures to promote human resources in a national territory without prejudice to the special features of each region. In pursuing these objectives: contribute to harmonious, balanced and sustainable development of economic activities, development of employment and human resources, protection and improvement of the environment, elimination of inequalities and promotion of equality between men and women.

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Activities

Together, the Funds cofinance development measures with member states by means of grants, development programmes with their own budgets rather than individual projects. The bulk of Funds are thus disbursed through Community Support Frameworks, negotiated on the basis of member states' plans. They are complemented by Community initiatives including actions extending beyond national borders which provide a framework for encouraging transnational cooperation and pooling of knowledge in areas of shared concern.

Relations with Inter-Governmental Organizations

Relations with 4 inter-governmental organizations.
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Members

Members in 0 countries
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Type I Classification

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Type II Classification

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Subjects *

  • Society
    • Social
  • Commerce
    • Finance
  • Economics
    • Economic

UN Sustainable Development Goals **

GOAL 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth

UIA Org ID

F2837

Last News Received

2013
* Subject classification is derived from the organization names and aims.
** UN SDGs are linked to the subject classification.

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