The Beacon - July 2016

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The Beacon July 2016  
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Rural development financial instruments showcased by fi-compass
Two macro-regional seminars were organised by fi-compass to raise awareness about opportunities for using financial instruments supported by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD). The events were titled ‘EAFRD financial instruments for agriculture and rural development in 2014-2020’ and took place in Madrid on 31 May and in Rome on 13 June 2016. Read more

New fi-compass handbook on ex-ante assessment for rural development financial instruments
A new fi-compass publication has been launched featuring advice about developing financial instruments for the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD). Entitled Methodological handbook for implementing an ex-ante assessment of agriculture financial instruments under the EAFRD, the new publication provides a planning framework for managing authorities interested in using EAFRD financial instruments.
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New factsheet on social entrepreneurship published by fi-compass
A new advisory publication has been released by fi-compass which explains the role that financial instruments for social enterprises can play in supporting Member States’ objectives for inclusion and employment. This factsheet, titled ‘Financial instruments working with social entrepreneurship’, is now available for downloading and sharing via the fi-compass website. 
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Microcredit and guarantee instruments in Italy’s Marche region
Sharing knowledge and experience about financial instruments in action is a central part of the fi-compass remit. Such networking happens through information events and written case studies. One example of this peer exchange refers to lessons learned from using microcredit in Italy’s Marche region. Read more

Dutch experiences with a revolving fund for fisheries
Financial instruments can be used to implement the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) including supporting sustainable development of fishery and aquaculture areas, Integrated Maritime Policy, processing and aquaculture, among others. Whilst such opportunities are available throughout EU fishery areas, the fi-compass EMFF scoping study highlights that lack of knowledge about revolving funds within EMFF managing authorities can limit the launch of more financial instruments for fisheries. Read more

Recent developments with ESIF financial instruments
Financial instruments continue to be at the forefront of European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) policy developments. A new Communication from the European Commission on Taking stock of the Investment Plan for Europe and next steps confirms a growing emphasis on using more ESIF financial instruments to deliver the EU’s Cohesion policy. Read more

Second Call for EaSI Technical Assistance to the European microcredit sector
The EaSI Technical Assistance (EaSI TA) is launching a second Call for Expression of Interest with the goal of identifying and selecting up to 34 European microcredit providers that will benefit from EaSI Technical Assistance services. Microcredit providers in the 28 EU Member States, as well as in Albania, FYROM, Iceland, Montenegro, Norway, Serbia and Turkey, may respond to this Call for Expression of Interest to request technical assistance. EaSI TA offers institutional assessment or rating and tailored training, advisory and coaching. To apply, microcredit providers must sign up to the European Code of Good Conduct for Microcredit Provision, a Europe-wide initiative to promote best practices within the sector. Read more

First ESI Fund financial instruments combined with EFSI
Previous news stories from fi-compass have highlighted the use of financial instruments from the European Structural and Investment Funds in combination with complementary instruments from the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI). News about the European Commission’s guidelines on combining ESIF and EFSI have also been featured for fi-compass stakeholders. A summary of these guidelines is available in 23 EU languages. They explain that EFSI can invest side-by-side with ESI Funds in Member States to help mobilise large financial volumes to generate growth and create jobs. Read more

Social innovation perspectives from Portugal
Financial instruments can be used by Member States to support social policy objectives. Experience from Portugal highlights how such socially-oriented revolving funds can help to fill gaps in the availability of finance for the growth of social innovation and social entrepreneurship projects. Read more

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