Germany top indirect beneficiary of EU cohesion funds: study
(WARSAW) - Germany one of the European Union's largest fund contributors, is also the top indirect beneficiary of cohesion payments to four Central European member states, a study has found.
Each euro that Germany pays into EU cohesion funds generates 1.25 euros (1.66 dollars) in revenues from exports to 2004 entrants Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary, according to a study by Poland's regional development ministry undertaken in cooperation with the three other states.
On average, each euro of EU funding invested in the fifteen EU states that comprised the bloc prior to its 2004 expansion generates an estimated 0.61 euro cents in exports, according to the study, which looked at the period from 2004 to 2015.
The bloc's 15 older member states will earn 74.69 billion euros from the EU's cohesion policy over the period, the study estimated.
The 27-member European Union has allocated 347 billion euros for cohesion and regional development spending over 2007-2013 period, accounting for 35.7 percent of its total budget.
With a population of 38 million, Poland is the largest EU newcomer and is expected to absorb 68 billion euros in cohesion payments over the period in question.
Warsaw is also lobbying hard against any reduction in cohesion funding in 2013-2020 EU spending plans.
"We want to demonstrate that if we make significant cuts to cohesion funding, the net contributors, namely Germany, France and Austria, will shoot themselves in the foot," Elzbieta Bienkowska, Poland's Regional Development Minister told AFP on Wednesday.
"Companies from these states will not be able to sell their products and will not sign contracts as is the case today," she added.
According to the study, The Netherlands rank second after Germany in returns from cohesion funding, earning 0.83 euros for each euro invested. Finland takes third spot with 0.58 euros per invested euro.
France earns just 20 euro cents in exports from each euro it contributes, however.
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