Financial aid in the field of the trans-European transport and energy networks
Report on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Decision No 1639/2006/EC establishing a Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (2007-2013) and Regulation (EC) No 680/2007 laying down general rules for the granting of Community financial aid in the field of the trans-European transport and energy networks
(COM(2011)0659 – C7-0372/2011 – 2011/0301(COD))
This report by Göran FÄRM (S&D, SE) was written for and adopted by the Committee on Budgets. Opinions were sought from the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy and also from the Committee on Transport and Tourism. Many suggestions for modifications were obtained.
The report points out that a modern and effective infrastructure is of key importance to the EU. The estimated cost of infrastructure investment for the period 2010 – 2020 is EUR 1.5 trillion. This will include Transport, Energy, and Information and Communication Technologies (ICT). Although much of this will be financed by the private sector, the public sector will also have a role to play in helping to achieve these targets.
For this purpose, the EU Commission has proposed a 'Connecting Europe Facility' (CEF) for the next financial framework. Particular focus will be given to strategic cross-border projects. The CEF includes a new financial instrument to mobilise more project bonds from private sector funding. For this there shall be a pilot phase for 2012-2013, with the objective to test the financial markets’ acceptance of these bonds. The ambition is to have these project bonds fully operational in 2014.
Among the many recommendations for ammendments, the following are suggested by the report.
Risk-sharing instrument for project bonds:
This is a joint instrument by the Commission and the European Investment Bank (EIB), which provides a credit enhancement to projects of common interest with European value, and will complement the financing of Member States and private investors and help bolster projects that do not receive adequate financing from the market.
Implementation of the instrument:
Risk assessment by the EIB shall be guaranteed in accordance with the Guidelines, and the EIB's selection criteria in the social, environmental and climate field shall be duly considered.
The Commission should also perform an independent, in-depth assessment of the pilot phase of the risk-sharing instrument for project bonds. If appropriate that assessment must be accompanied by legislative proposals on innovative financial instruments in the context of the Multiannual Financial Framework for the period 2014-2020.
The Commission is required to report to the Parliament and the Council at six-month intervals during the pilot phase. These reports should contain information on the performance of the risk-sharing instrument and recommendations for its improvement.
By the 30th June 2013 the Commission should submit a report containing a list of the projects selected for the financial aid, specifying the contribution, the financing institutions and the investors involved. There should also be included in this report a good practice guide and a list of investors potentially interested in innovative financial instruments.
The European Parliament voted to approve the report with 579 for, 32 against and 9 abstentions.
To read the report click here
Alternatively visit the website at www.europarl.europa.eu
Last Updated (Friday, 03 August 2012 10:12)