"The Connecting Europe Facility is a cornerstone of the Trans-European transport Network. It brings people from all corners of the EU closer together, creates jobs and enhances the competitiveness of our regions, and is thus a driving force for more integration and a better Europe", stressed today Ximo Puig i Ferrer, President of the Regional Government of Valencia (PES/ES).
His draft opinion on the Future of the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) Transport, which aims at taking stock of the current CEF's implementation and at advocating for a better involvement of regions and cities in the next programming period's legislative proposals, has been warmly welcomed by CoR members.
Ximo Puig calls for funding rates to be increased for ports, maritime transport, multi-modal and "last mile" connections and the implementation of priority urban nodes and a better coordination with other funds (such as the European Funds for Strategic Investment and the cohesion funds).
The rapporteur also stresses the need to decentralise the processes of selecting, managing, monitoring and controlling projects, in order to better address the needs of regions which have a high responsibility in implementing and monitoring public investment. Likewise, the draft opinion suggests that the EU Urban Agenda's mobility partnerships should take better into account the transport nodes, in particular as regards TEN-T networks crossing through urban and metropolitan nodes, as well as missing cross-border links and peripheral regions.
The opinion provides timely input for the European Commission's Proposal on the Future of the CEF, to be presented in the first quarter of 2018, and for the Proposal on the next Multiannual Financial Framework.