On 23 December 2020, Members of the European Parliament (MEPs): Adriana Maldonado López (S&D) and Idoia Villanueva Ruiz (The Left), posed a written parliamentary question to the European Commission:
“Last year, DG REGIO presented an orientation paper on the future Euro MED 2021-2027 transnational cooperation programme which proposed extending the geographical scope of the 2014-2020 programme to include the following Spanish ‘Mediterranean hinterland areas’, among others: Extremadura, Castilla-La Mancha, the Community of Madrid, La Rioja and the Autonomous Community of Navarra. In September 2020, DG REGIO then proposed a revised version omitting these areas.
Navarre sees trade relations with countries such as Turkey and Morocco as a priority. The region has participated in several projects under the PRIMA programme, in cooperation with Spain’s National Centre for Food Technology and Safety for instance, as well as the Agrupación Empresarial Innovadora (Innovative Business Grouping) and the Food+i Cluster Association, which promotes the agri-food sector. Navarra has stable structures for exchanges and joint work between regions in the Mediterranean cooperation area. Its aims in terms of connectivity and logistics include linking the Atlantic and Mediterranean rail corridors, something the Council had established as a priority for the Trans-European Transport Network’s core network for 2018.
Would the Commission therefore consider including Navarra in the Euro MED 2021-2027 transnational cooperation programme?”
On 15 February 2021, Cohesion and Reforms Commissioner Elisa Ferreira responded on behalf of the European Commission stating: “The Task Force of the future Euro-Med Programme, meeting on 20 October 2020, decided on the enlargement procedure for the admission of new candidate regions to the Programme. All new candidatures of regions wishing to participate in the Euro-Med Programme 2021-2027 have to be submitted by the respective Participating State. In the meantime, the national authorities of the countries concerned have submitted their candidates to the Task Force.
During the Task Force meeting held on 17 December 2020, the Presidency of the Monitoring Committee informed that it has received the candidacy of 5 autonomous regions of Spain: Castilla La Mancha, Extremadura, La Rioja, Madrid and Navarra. During this meeting, the delegate of the Spanish Ministry of Finances presented the arguments for the enlargement of the Programme to the five Spanish regions.
It was agreed that the decision on the geography of the programme 2021-2027 would be taken by consensus of all the Members of the Task Force, during the next meeting in February 2021.”
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