More solidarity with regions hit by natural disasters

Council of the EU
  • 29/03/2017
  • 11:45
  • Press release
  • 161/17
  • Regional development
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On 29 March 2017, the Council's Permanent Representatives Committee backed a proposal to increase EU support for regions affected by earthquakes, floods, droughts and other natural disasters. The EU share in the costs of reconstruction would raise to up to 90%. This would almost double the EU financial contribution for some regions from the current level of 50%. Today's decision allows the Maltese Presidency to start negotiations with the European Parliament. 

"Anybody who has seen at first hand the effects of a natural disaster knows what a devastating impact it can have on people's lives. Whilst we cannot prevent natural disasters, we can offer support to affected regions and help them in the task of reconstruction. That's why we have taken this decision today".

Ian Borg, parliamentary secretary for EU funds of Malta and President of the Council

The increase of the EU financing rate would apply to payments from the European fund for regional development (ERDF). The total volume of the EU financed part of the ERDF of around €196.4 billion for the period 2014-2020 would remain unchanged.

The increased EU financing rate from the ERDF would complement the financial assistance that the EU already provides through its solidarity fund. The solidarity fund can be mobilised for an amount of up to €500.0 million per year to help member states to cope with natural disasters.