16 Feb 2015
EUROPEAN COMMISSION DAILY NEWS – 16 FEBRUARYBrussels Daily
Preparation of Economic and Finance Ministers Council (ECOFIN)
On 17 February in Brussels, Vice-President Georgieva, Vice-President Dombrovskis, Vice-President Katainen and Commissioner Moscovici will participate in the EU’s Council of Economic and Finance Ministers’ meeting. EU budgetary issues rank high on the meeting’s agenda. The Council is expected to set priorities for the 2016 EU budget and to adopt a recommendation to the European Parliament on the 2013 EU budget discharge. Further, the High Level Group on Own Resources will present to the Council its first assessment report on the EU budget’s own resources system. On the legislative work front, the Ministers will discuss the Commission’s proposal for a Regulation on the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI). The Commission stands ready to provide all the technical support needed to get the proposal adopted by the co-legislators swiftly. The Council is also due to adopt conclusions on the Annual Growth Survey, which sets out the overarching economic and social priorities for the EU for this year. Council’s conclusions are also expected for the Alert Mechanism Report (AMR), which provides an early warning on imbalances and identifies Member States warrant an in-depth review of their economies.
Commission and European Investment Bank launch two financial tools for environment, energy efficiency, and climate action projects
Today, the European Commission and the European Investment Bank (EIB) launch two financial instruments to drive investment in energy efficiency, efforts to preserve natural capital, and adaptation to climate change. The objective is to unlock public and private investments by combining EIB loans with financing under the EU LIFE Programme for Environment and Climate Action. The first instrument – the Natural Capital Financing Facility – foresees a total budget of €100–125 million for 2014-2017 and will support viable nature and climate adaptation projects. The second instrument aims to increase private financing for energy efficiency projects. The Commission has committed €80 million for 2014-2017, anticipating an 8-fold leverage effect. Both mechanisms complement the Investment Plan for Europe, helping to remove market barriers by investing in projects with real added value for the European economy. Karmenu Vella, EU Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries and Miguel Arias Cañete, EU Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy are participating in the official launch of these tools. A press release is available online.