CEF plays key role for peripheral countries like Malta, says MEP Sant

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 CEF plays key role for peripheral countries like Malta, says MEP Sant“The programme – Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) after 2020 – plays a key role, especially for peripheral countries like Malta, because it facilitates cross-border connections, establishes multimodal nodes, addresses market failure and removes bottlenecks,” Maltese MEP Alfred Sant told the European Parliament.

“The European Commission,” said Sant, “should continue providing the technical assistance in order to promote the eligibility of high-quality projects, but also adapt this assistance to smaller project applicants.”

The MEP pointed out that the CEF is a key EU funding instrument to promote growth, jobs and competitiveness through targeted infrastructure investment at European level.

“I voted in favour of the resolution on the CEF transport pillar after 2020 because it focuses on the right priorities in order to further exploit its full potential,”” said Dr Sant.

He added that, “the financial capacity under the 2021-2027 MFF period should be increased, and the CEF policy objectives broadened by including investments in digital, innovative and sustainable transport projects.”

“The complementarity between the CEF and other programmes such as Horizon Europe and the Invest EU Fund should be reinforced, in order to avoid overlaps and optimise budgetary resources,” remarked the Maltese MEP.

“Finally, the complexity of submitting a project including administrative requirements constitutes important barriers especially for large transport infrastructure.”

Dr Sant concluded by saying that whereas transport infrastructures are essential to countering imbalances between European regions by ensuring growth, competitiveness, social and territorial cohesion, “their development is still fragmented and represents a major challenge in terms of capacity and financing.”

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