Economía Asks The Autonomous Communities For Plans To Invest The Extra 22 Billion From The Recovery Plan

nadia calviño 2Spanish Ministry of Economy, Nadia Calviño

Spain is finally eligible to receive just over 161.5 billion euros from the European Recovery Mechanism for the Covid crisis, some 22 billion more than the 140 billion initially planned from the sum of transfers and loans from the Next Generation EU fund. The increase comes about because the country’s poor economic performance means adding 7.724 billion in direct aid to the 69.510 billion originally allocated and because the distribution of loans, equivalent to 6.8 per cent of gross national income, will be around 84.5 billion compared to the 70 billion initially estimated. In order to articulate the use of the new funds and make the request for the loans, the government is preparing an addendum to the Recovery Plan that includes new investment projects and reforms. After gathering proposals from the other ministries, the First Vice-President and Minister for Economic Affairs, Nadia Calviño, announced yesterday that she will now request contributions from the autonomous communities.

“Between today and tomorrow, I am going to send a letter to the presidents of the autonomous communities to request their proposals and comments with a view to drawing up this addendum, which we hope to present to the European Commission in the second half of the year,” Calviño told the press yesterday.

“All the data indicate the acceleration in the deployment of investments with European funds. We are reaching cruising speed,” said Calviño, who put the monthly rate of state and regional calls for proposals that are being held at “more than 2,000 million euros”. In total, as of 7 July, Calviño detailed, the State has authorised the execution of 53% of the European funds budgeted for 2022, 15.1 billion euros, while the volume formally committed is 34% and the obligations recognised are 23%.

In parallel, the government has allocated almost 16 billion euros to the autonomous regions, which have resolved 650 calls for proposals for 21,000 beneficiary projects. The regions that have received the most funds to date are Andalusia (2,598 million euros), Catalonia (2,227 million euros), the Community of Madrid (1,689 million euros), the Canary Islands (1,099 million euros), Castile and Leon (998 million euros) and Galicia (951 million euros), according to Economía.

In contrast to Calviño’s positive reading, the regions governed by the PP were very critical of the design of the implementation of the Recovery Plan and its rate of progress. “The autonomous communities of the PP insist on the absolute absence of co-governance and the lack of execution of the funds, which makes us fear for a possible loss of funds due to lack of execution,” they denounced in a statement, asserting that in many cases the designed plans have little to do with “the real needs of the territories”. “We have denounced this time and time again and we have been ignored. The government’s design has turned us into mere executors of plans that have no connection with the territory”,

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