The disbursement of 157 million euros as pre-financing under the Recovery and Sustainability Mechanism for Cyprus was announced by the Commission on Thursday morning.
As noted in the announcement, the transfer concerns 13% of the financing and loans corresponding to Cyprus under the Recovery and Sustainability Mechanism. This amount will contribute to the implementation of the investments and reforms recorded in the national recovery and resilience plan of the country.
The next payments of the relevant funds will be approved by the Commission on the basis of the implementation of the investments and the reforms planned by Cyprus. In total, Cyprus will receive 1.2 billion euros, with 1 billion consisting of grants and 200 million euros consisting of loans.
Positive news for Cyprus with the disbursement of the 1st installment by #NextGenerationEU!
The green and digital transformation of the country begins. #NextGenerationEU will help Cyprus to protect itself from fires.
I wish you good luck in the implementation of the plan. pic.twitter.com/9TZWSSXUJB
– Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) September 9, 2021
The disbursement of the amount follows the start of borrowing under the NextGenerationEU program. By the end of the year, the Commission aims to raise up to € 80 billion in long-term funding, complemented by short-term EU bills, to fund the first planned disbursements to Member States under NextGenerationEU.
Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni said the 157m-euro pre-financing “will help Cyprus implement significant climate change measures and address the threat of forest fires, boost the country's digital competitiveness and boost education.” and training “. Mr Gentiloni also welcomed “Cyprus' commitments to limit the possibilities of aggressive tax planning”.
In a statement, Budget and Administration Commissioner Johannes Hahn expressed his satisfaction with the launch of RRF disbursements. “Intensive cooperation with Cyprus and good preparation within the Commission have allowed us to pay the funds in record time. “This shows that with the resources raised, we will be able to respond quickly to the pre-financing needs of all Member States, thus giving them the initial impetus to implement the numerous green and digital projects included in their national plans.”
In total, the Recovery and Resilience Fund (RRF) will provide € 723.8 billion (in current prices) to support investment and reform in all Member States, while promoting green and digital transitions and strengthening resilience and cohesion in Europe. societies.
Commission President Ursula von der Leyen described the disbursement of 157 million as an important milestone. “These measures will help ensure the digital and green transition of Cyprus, by supporting energy efficiency, sustainable mobility, education and training and improving connectivity.”
“I am especially proud that a significant part of the funds will be dedicated to the protection of Cyprus from the threat of forest fires,” he stressed.
The projects to be funded include ensuring the green transition, supporting the digital transition and enhancing economic and social resilience.
In particular, the Cypriot project will invest 89 million euros in measures for energy efficiency and renewable energy, 87 million euros to promote sustainable and green mobility and 19 million euros to upgrade the country's ability to fight fire: purchase of firefighting aircraft, vehicles, equipment and provision of relevant training.
In the field of digital transition, the project will invest 133 million euros in the digitization of public services, creating a secure, integrated and modern digital architecture to support the transition to a combination of digital public services. It will also invest € 87 million to improve access to communication infrastructure and support an inclusive digital transformation.
In terms of economic and social resilience, € 51 million will be invested in increasing the quality of education and training through the reform of the teaching profession and secondary school curricula, the introduction of a modern vocational education system and the introduction of a system monitoring of higher education graduates. The plan will also introduce withholding tax on outgoing payments made to non-cooperative and low-tax jurisdictions on the EU list and other measures to limit aggressive tax planning.
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