Europe

End of EU cash forces search for alternatives

The EU has ploughed €43bn (£35.4bn) of long-term investment into the UK over the past eight years. Funding recipients have included regeneration schemes, social housing, university investment, skills and infrastructure, many in areas that voted to leave the EU.

Post-Brexit, will large regeneration projects be under threat in the future?

Here, EG maps out the regions that have received the most EU development funding against how they voted in the referendum.

ERDF-map

How much?

Between 2014 and 2020 the UK was due to receive €10.7bn (£8.8bn) from the European Regional Development Fund and European Social Fund, distributed through local enterprise partnerships.

Urban-renewal projects have also received substantial support through structural funds including Joint European Support for Sustainable Investment in City Areas, which has allocated £274m to the UK since it was launched in 2011.

Jessica-funding-pie-chart

The regions set out their case for continued funding

Mark Duddridge, chair of the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership: “The real bedrock of our investment programme… comes from the EU. So our view is unambiguous. The UK government must guarantee that we receive our full allocation of European Union investment, even if that money is no longer provided by the European Union after the referendum vote.”

Ken Dytor, managing director of regeneration specialist Urban Catalyst: “I have not seen any direct investment in property development projects from the EU. In light of the vote to leave the EU, the most welcome move from the government would be to make a renewed commitment to the continuation of Homes and Communities Agency funding and Regional Growth Fund investment.”

Welsh first minister Carwyn Jones: “During the referendum campaign, the Leave side made cast-iron promises that this money would continue to come to Wales in the event of a vote to leave the EU. We require this funding assurance immediately, as there are hundreds of vital EU-funded projects right across Wales whose future is now in the balance unless that funding guarantee is given.”

What now?

• Loan contracts already signed for UK-based projects will remain in force.

• European Investment Bank will continue to appraise new projects until an alternative decision by bank’s shareholders.

• Once Article 50 is triggered, it will take two years for an EU member state to withdraw, during which money could still be awarded.

 

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