Estonia among top three effective users of EU funds in Eastern Europe (3)
During the previous fiscal period, the countries that used European Union funds most effectively in Central and Eastern Europe were Lithuania, Slovenia, and Estonia, an analysis by audit firm KPMG showed.
The effectiveness of how support is used is shown by the difference between the allocated sums and those paid out, which at the end of last year was 0% in Lithuania, 2% in Slovenia, and 5% in Estonia, while totaling 60% in Croatia, which joined the EU in 2013.
In Estonia, 100% of EU support was covered by contracts, and 95% was paid out by the EU, the analysis shows.
Between 2007 and 2015, during the period the analysis covers, large investments in infrastructure, schools, hospitals, communal buildings, and research and development were made. In addition, efforts were funded to develop modern technology and increase the size of the qualified workforce.
EU support amounted to 16.6% of Estonia’s gross domestic product, which is slightly higher than the average of Central and Eastern Europe, where it is 14.8%.
Funds allocated to Estonia for 2014 to 2020 total €3.33bn compared to the €3.4bn allocated during the previous budget period. By the end of last year, nearly 23% of the total volume had been covered by contracts, and 2% or €70m had been paid out.
In the long run, Estonia is expected to become a net payer instead of a net receiver, which is why it needs to have a strategic approach to EU support.
The KMPG analysis, titled “EU Funds in Central and Eastern Europe – Progress Report 2007-2015”, analyzed the European Union’s 11 newest member states that joined the organization between 2004 and 2013: Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia.