The European Commission welcomes the independent evaluation of the Investment Plan for Europe published by EY. The report strengthens the case for reinforcing, extending and expanding the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the heart of the Investment Plan for Europe. The Commission proposed this extension on 14 September in the context of President Juncker’s State of the Union Address in order to build on the achievements already delivered in strengthening Europe’s competitiveness and stimulating investment in order to create jobs. The report confirms that the EFSI mechanism works to mobilise additional investments in the real economy: EFSI allows the European Investment Bank (EIB) to take on more risk; the EU budget guarantee functions well; SME financing under the EFSI has been a great success; and there is a clear need for technical assistance to strengthen the stable pipeline of projects in Europe. Vice-President Jyrki Katainen, responsible for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, said: “Today’s report endorses the direction of travel in which we are taking the Investment Plan. We will take all this feedback on board and we will continue to work closely with our partners at the European Investment Bank to take the Plan to its next phase. Our aim under the Investment Plan has always been to bring Europeans back into jobs and to boost growth. The most recent data shows we are on the right track, and it is satisfying that independent evaluators agree with our approach.” The report will feed into the legislative process for the extension of the EFSI along with the Commission’s 14 September evaluation and the EIB’s 6 October evaluation.
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