Spain Has Executed Less Than A Third Of The European Recovery Funds, Some 6.5 Bn Euros, According To FEDEA.

Spain's government

FEDEA (Fundación de Estudios de Economía Aplicada) analyses existing information on the implementation and execution of investment projects and aid programmes included in the Recovery Plan (RP) and financed by the EU’s Recovery and Resilience Mechanism (RRM). So far, programmes and projects representing about one third of the planned expenditure have been launched, but with significant differences between headings.

Of the 24 billion of RRM funds budgeted for 2021, 20 billion euros have been implemented during the year. A significant part of this amount, however, corresponds to transfers from the State to public bodies and entities or to autonomous communities. They in turn will continue the task of processing European funds until they reach the agent that will ultimately manage the corresponding calls for proposals or tenders. It is therefore important to distinguish between the provisional execution and the final execution or final expenditure of the funds of the RRM.

The budget execution data published monthly by the IGAE give us a good idea of what the State does in the first instance with the funds of the RRM which, in their practical totality, are initially integrated into its budgets. However, there is very little information on what happens with the part of these funds which is transferred to other public administrations or entities for final execution. That is because these (including those integrated in the state public sector) do not publish budget execution reports with the same urgency and detail as the National Government.

With the information available so far, we can only get an approximate idea of the degree of final execution of the resources of the MRR. According to the IGAE, in 2021 the State definitively executed expenditures for a total amount of 805 million euros, which represents 27.2% of the total 2.964 billion of RRM funds that it managed directly.

It also provisionally executed a total of 19.2 billion euros, which has been transferred to other entities and administrations for further processing. There is virtually no information on the final level of execution of these funds, but an educated guess can perhaps be made. Since these administrations and entities start their part of the procedures later than the State, it can be assumed that the final execution rate of the funds they manage will not be higher than that of the State. Under this assumption, we can apply the State’s final execution rate (27.2% at the end of 2021) to the total expenditure budgeted for the year (€24.087 billion) to obtain an estimate, which would probably have to be considered a maximum, of the final expenditure executed under the Recovery Plan. The figure thus obtained would amount to €6.545 billion.