Regional policy financial instruments ready to meet the EU challenges

Webinar

1–2 December 2020
About the event

Importance of financial instruments continues under the reinforced Cohesion policy

Nearly 600 participants from all across Europe tuned in to this years’ flagship fi-compass online conference titled ‘Regional policy financial instruments ready to meet the EU challenges’, that was organised by European Commission’s Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy (DG REGIO) in partnership with the European Investment Bank (EIB) on 1-2 December 2020. 

This virtual conference offered a comprehensive and interactive programme for practitioners working or planning to work with financial instruments under shared management funds in their 2021-2027 programmes, especially the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Cohesion Fund (CF), as well as the Just Transition Fund. Over 30 speakers from the European Commission, the EIB Group as well as national bodies discussed hot topics related to financial instruments and interacted with participants through live polls and Q&A sessions as well as graphic recordings of the conference proceedings.

Elisa Ferreira, European Commissioner for Cohesion and Reform, highlighted in her opening message the unique opportunities presented by the combination of the reinforced Cohesion policy and the Next Generation EU instruments, aiming to support reforms and investments in the EU at an unprecedented scale. She underlined that financial instruments will play an important role in delivering these investments and reforms, enabling to rise to the current EU challenges and create stronger and more competitive regions.

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Elisa Ferreira

The policy framework for the next EU budget period was presented further by Normunds Popens, Deputy-Director General, DG REGIO, who emphasised the necessity to explore the potential of financial instruments in different sectors, including urban development.

In her keynote speech, Myrto Papathanou, fund manager at Metavallon, a financial intermediary under the ERDF co-financed EquiFund fund of funds in Greece, presented examples of companies that were able to grow their businesses with help of equity backed with European resources. She also explained how EquiFund contributed to the creation of a strong venture capital (VC) ecosystem in the country, endorsing the positive impact of ERDF co-financed financial instruments on the ground.

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Legislation update - the new CPR & other key regulation

Jonathan Denness, Head of Financial Instruments and International Financial Institutions Unit, DG REGIO, discussed in the next session with Frank Lee, Head of the Financial Instruments Advisory Division, EIB, the role of Cohesion policy, especially financial instruments under shared management funds, in ensuring a balanced recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and what advisory support is available.

Key novelties for financial instruments in the Common Provisions Regulation (CPR) for 2021-2027 were discussed in the legislative update session with Ieva Zālīte, Policy Officer and Oana-Andreea Dordain, Deputy Head of Financial Instruments and International Financial Institutions Unit, both DG REGIO, moderated by Bruno Robino, Head of fi-compass, EIB. Important topics such as combination of financial instruments and grants as well as the continuation of instruments in two consecutive periods were tackled in this session.

EU Renovation wave – new opportunities for energy efficiency financial instruments

Simon Barnes, Head of Advisory Services, EIB, opened the sector-specific part of the conference dedicated to the EU Renovation wave and energy efficiency financial instruments, explaining how the EIB Group aims to support the objectives of the European Green Deal and sustainable development outside the European Union with view to its recently approved Climate Bank Roadmap.

Under the EU Renovation wave, the potential to combine financial instruments and grants for energy efficiency sector increased significantly. The policy objectives of this initiative were presented by Paula Rey Garcia, Deputy Head of Unit, DG ENER. Carlos Sanchez Rivero, Team Leader, Energy Efficiency Finance, DG ENER, discussed subsequently its financial aspects. The practical opportunities of the new technical framework were detailed by Olivier Dumoulin, Policy Officer, DG REGIO. Götz von Thadden, Head of Unit, EIB, discussed on the example of the Residential energy efficiency financial instruments in Lithuania and how to put these new possibilities in practice.

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Combination in one operation
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Lilyana Pavlova

In the final session of day 1 titled ‘Financial instruments friendly programmes’, Oana-Andreea Dordain, DG REGIO and Emily Smith, Head of Unit, EIB, guided participants on how to best prepare a programme that supports the use of financial instruments as a financing tool.

Day 1 of the conference was closed by Lilyana Pavlova, Vice-President, EIB, who discussed the important role of financial instruments under shared management funds to help mobilise the finance needed to achieve EU’s objectives and expressed the commitment of the EIB to continue and enhance its support for Cohesion policy through its lending, mandate management and advisory activities.

InvestEU Programme to kick-start the European economy (and day 2 of the conference)

Day 2 of the conference began with a session dedicated to InvestEU as the EU's proposed flagship investment programme to kick-start the European economy. Tsvyatko Velikov, Policy Analyst, DG REGIO, presented the latest state of play with regard to the Member State (MS) Compartment of InvestEU. This followed interventions by Astrid Bartels, Deputy Head of Unit, DG GROW and Stéphane Ouaki, Head of Unit, DG RTD, on the products and policy priorities currently designed under the SME and RID policy windows respectively. Finally, representatives from managing authorities in Finland and Poland shared their considerations on setting up an MS Compartment.

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InvestEU programme

Parallel sessions on financial instruments supporting SMEs and energy efficiency

Financial instruments in two key sectors in the new Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF), SME financing and energy efficiency, were the topics of interactive parallel sessions with a number of experts from DG REGIO, DG ENER and the EIB Group. This included also panel discussions with national representatives from Croatia, France, Hungary, Lithuania, the Netherlands and Slovakia. Also the recent fi-compass publications, available on the #ficompass2021 page, were presented as helpful in the process of preparing for the new programming period.

Jonathan Denness and Frank Lee closed the conference encouraging the audience to further build the financial instruments community, use the support available and explore the new potentials for financial instruments when preparing their 2021-2027 programmes. In case of additional questions related to the European Commission’s presentations at the event on the new proposed CPR and the InvestEU Programme, please contact: REGIO-B3-FINANCIAL-INSTRUMENTS@ec.europa.eu.

Presentations

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Title Speakers
file not yet available video file not yet available file not yet available Welcome and opening

Shirin Wheeler, Principal Advisor International Media, European Investment Bank (moderator of day 1)

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Official opening

Elisa Ferreira, European Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms

file not yet available video file not yet available file not yet available Introductory policy statement

Normunds Popens, Deputy Director-General, DG REGIO, European Commission

file not yet available video file not yet available file not yet available Keynote address

Myrto Papathanou, Partner, Metavallon, Greece

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Cohesion policy and the EU recovery plan

Jonathan Denness, Head of Unit, DG REGIO, European Commission

Frank Lee, Head of Financial Instruments Advisory Division, European Investment Bank

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Legislation update – The new CPR and other key regulations

Ieva Zālīte, Policy Officer, DG REGIO, European Commission

Oana-Andreea Dordain, Deputy Head of Unit, DG REGIO, European Commission

Bruno Robino, Head of fi-compass, European Investment Bank (session moderator)

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The EIB as the EU’s Climate Bank

Simon Barnes, Head of Advisory Services, European Investment Bank

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Financing the EU Renovation wave through financial instruments in combination with grants

Paula Rey Garcia, Deputy Head of Unit, DG ENER, European Commission

Carlos Sanchez Rivero, Team Leader, Energy Efficiency Finance, DG ENER, European Commission

Olivier Dumoulin, Policy Officer, DG REGIO, European Commission

Götz von Thadden, Head of Unit for Financial Instruments in the Baltic Sea & Northern Europe, European Investment Bank

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‘Financial instrument friendly’ programmes

Oana-Andreea Dordain, Deputy Head of Unit, DG REGIO, European Commission

Emily Smith, Head of Unit, Financial Instruments Advisory, European Investment Bank

file not yet available video file not yet available file not yet available Closing address

Lilyana Pavlova, Vice-President, European Investment Bank

file not yet available video file not yet available file not yet available Welcome and opening of day two

Desmond Gardner, Financial Instruments Advisor, European Investment Bank (moderator of day 2)

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InvestEU Programme – Outlook for the upcoming period

Tsvyatko Velikov, Policy Analyst, DG REGIO, European Commission

Astrid Bartels, Deputy Head of Unit, DG GROW, European Commission

Stéphane Ouaki, Head of Unit, DG RTD, European Commission

Mariateresa Di Giacomo, Team Leader, DFI Strategy and Coordination, Mandate Management, European Investment Bank

Katarzyna Kaczkowska, Deputy Head of Department, Ministry of Development Funds and Regional Policy, Poland

Kati Heiska, Senior Specialist, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, Finland

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SME financial instruments in the response to the COVID-19 crisis

Krzysztof Kasprzyk, Policy Officer, DG REGIO, European Commission

Gianluca Massimi, Head of Region – Iberia, Italy, Malta and Western Balkans, European Investment Fund

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fi-compass report – Gap analysis for SME financing

Wojciech Furmanski, Policy Analyst, DG REGIO, European Commission

Alain Kauffmann, Financial Instruments Advisor, European Investment Bank

file not yet available video file not yet available file not yet available Panel discussion – Financial instruments to support SMEs

Marina Marasović, Managing Director, Croatian Bank for Reconstruction and Development (HBOR)

Ivan Lesay, Chief Executive Officer, Slovak Investment Holding

Fabrice Salemi, Deputy Director of Economy & Innovation, Region Occitanie, France

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Energy Efficiency financial instruments contribution to the EU climate targets

Carlos Sanchez Rivero, Team Leader, Energy Efficiency Finance, DG ENER, European Commission

Robert Pernetta, Financial Instruments Advisor, European Investment Bank

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Financial instruments to support Energy Efficiency in housing

Robert Pernetta, Financial Instruments Advisor, European Investment Bank

Adam Abdulwahab, DG REGIO, European Commission

file not yet available video file not yet available file not yet available Panel discussion – Scaling up investment in Energy Efficiency in housing

Inesis Kiškis, Department Director, Ministry of Environment, Lithuania

Ton Overmeire, Fund Manager, Holding Fund HEID, Municipality The Hague, the Netherlands

Cecília Gyalog, Head of Unit, EU Coordination Unit, MFB Hungarian Development Bank

file not yet available video file not yet available file not yet available Closing session

Emily Smith, Head of Unit, Financial Instruments Advisory, European Investment Bank

Oana-Andreea Dordain, Deputy Head of Unit, DG REGIO, European Commission

Bruno Robino, Head of fi-compass, European Investment Bank

file not yet available video file not yet available file not yet available Closing remarks

Jonathan Denness, Head of Unit, DG REGIO, European Commission

Frank Lee, Head of Financial Instruments Advisory Division, European Investment Bank

Event pictures
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Ms Elisa Ferreira, European Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms
Ms Elisa Ferreira
Ms Elisa Ferreira, European Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms
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Ms Ieva Zālīte, Policy Officer, DG REGIO, European Commission; Ms Oana-Andreea Dordain, Deputy Head of Unit, DG REGIO, European Commission and Mr Bruno Robino, Head of fi-compass, European Investment Bank
Ms Ieva Zālīte, Ms Oana-Andreea Dordain and Mr Bruno Robino
Ms Ieva Zālīte, Policy Officer, DG REGIO, European Commission; Ms Oana-Andreea Dordain, Deputy Head of Unit, DG REGIO, European Commission and Mr Bruno Robino, Head of fi-compass, European Investment Bank
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Mr Jonathan Denness and Mr Frank Lee
Closing remarks – Mr Jonathan Denness and Mr Frank Lee
Mr Jonathan Denness, Head of Unit, DG REGIO, European Commission and Mr Frank Lee, Head of Financial Instruments Advisory Division, European Investment Bank
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