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ZEI Monitor: EU Progress 2019-2024



ZEI follows policy progress in the ten areas which have priority for EU institutions over the period 2019-2024:


Commission Priority 3: An Economy that works for people




  • A deeper and fairer economic and monetary union

  • Internal Market

  • Jobs, growth and investment

  • European Semester

  • Boosting jobs

European Commission Work Program:

2020 (revised after the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic)

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Social Europe

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Economic Governance: EU Recovery Instrument ('Next Generation EU')

  • Proposal for the legal framework of the 'EU Recovery Instrument':

On the 28th of May 2020, the European Commission presented a Proposal for a Council Regulation on the Establishment of a European Union Recovery Instrument to support the recovery in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Instrument shall be financed up to an amount of 750 billion euro. The support will include grants, loans and guarantees.

Grants shall amount to 433.2 billion euro in the form of non-repayable support and repayable support through financial instruments.

Loans to the member states will be up to 250 billion euro for a programme financing recovery and economic and social resilience via support to reforms and investments.

Guarantees of up to 66.8 billion euro.    

  • Key operational pillar - the 'Recovery and Resilience Facility':

As the key pillar of 'Next Generation EU', the European Commission on the 28th of May 2020 put forward a Proposal for a Regulation establishing a Recovery and Resilience Facility.

Key principles and elements include:

General objective: Promoting the Union’s economic, social and territorial cohesion by improving the resilience and adjustment  capacity of the member states, mitigating the social and economic impact of  the crisis, and supporting the green and digital transitions, thereby contributing to restoring the growth potential of the economies of the Union, fostering employment creation in the aftermath of the COVID-19  crisis, and promoting sustainable growth.

Financing volume: a. 334.95 billion euro in grants for non-repayable support; b. 267.955 billion euro for  loan support to member states

How does it work? A maximum financial contribution shall be calculated for each member state for the allocation of the amount of the GRANTS based on the population, the inverse of the per capita Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and the relative unemployment rate of each member state.

Additionality: Support under the Recovery and Resilience Facility shall be additional to the support provided under other Union funds and programs.

Eligibility criteria: Member states shall prepare national recovery and resilience plans. These plans shall set out the reform and investment agenda of the member state concerned for the subsequent four years. Recovery and resilience plans eligible for financing under this instrument shall comprise measures for the implementation of reforms and public investment projects through a coherent package
The recovery and resilience plans shall be consistent with the relevant country-specific challenges and priorities identified in the context ofthe European Semester, in particular those relevant for or resulting from the green and digital transition.

Compliance of member states: Where the recovery and resilience plan does not comply satisfactorily with the criteria / modes of use set out in Article 16(3) of the Regulation, no financial contribution shall be allocated to the member state concerned.

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Deepening the Capital Markets Union

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Completing the Banking Union

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Effective Taxation

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Customs Union Package


ZEI Insights 

Further Publications

Ludger Kühnhardt: Die proto-konstitutionelle Etablierung der europäischen Innenpolitik  (ZEI Discussion Paper C225, Bonn 2014)  (Download) (Abstract)

Ludger Kühnhardt, Die Europa-Rettung (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 17 March, 2014).(More)



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