“The reservations of some member states on the expansion of the Recovery and Resilience Fund ignore the fact that these policies do not only strengthen the direct beneficiaries, but Europe as a whole,” said Friday by the 9th Cohesion Forum in Brussels, the Minister of National Economy and Finance, Kostis Hatzidakis, at the 9th Cohesion Forum, responding to a German government spokesman who called the prospect of an expansion of the Recovery and Resilience Fund “illegal”.

“They should not overlook the member states that are reacting, for fear of contributing more to the European budget,” added Mr. Hatzidakis, “that practically part of these funds goes back to the member states that bear the greatest burden for the financing of these politicians. But the bottom line is that the Cohesion Policy combined with the Recovery Fund are a powerful tool for the EU. They are a European Marshall Plan. It is critical to ensure that this tool continues to exist in the future and the necessary funding should be made available for this. We don’t want less Europe. We want a more efficient and dynamic Europe. It takes vision and belief and we should stick to it.”

The Minister of National Economy and Finance, Kostis Hatzidakis, participated in the 9th Cohesion Forum in Brussels, as a representative of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis. He took part in the panel discussion on: “What is the EU’s Cohesion Policy for the future”. Among others, also participated in the discussion Vasco Alves Cordeiro, President of the European Committee of the Regions, Christopher Fearne, Deputy Prime Minister of Malta, Teodora Preoteasa, Deputy Minister of Investments of Romania, Andrés Rodríguez Pose, President of the Expert Group on the Future of Cohesion Policy and Rachel de Basso , President of the County Council of Jönköping County, Sweden.

In his intervention, Mr. Hatzidakis referred to the significant contribution that the EU’s Cohesion Policy has over time in terms of improving the well-being of all people living in Europe, while he pointed out that this policy is the compensation for the creation and operation of the single market and constitutes a tangible manifestation of community solidarity.

With reference to the future priorities of the Cohesion Policy, the Greek Minister emphasized that alongside continuing to support the digital and green transition, he should also focus on addressing the new challenges facing Europe, such as strengthening the international competitiveness of European economies , the smooth integration of immigrants and demographics.

Regarding Greece in particular, the Minister pointed out that the European funds from the NSRF in combination with the Recovery and Resilience Fund have played a decisive role in the regeneration of the Greek economy in recent years, both through the financing of investments and through the acceleration of critical reforms.