Challenges for the EU New Member States
Edited by Massimo Florio
Chapter 8: Structural Funds Business Support and Employment Growth in Manufacturing: Perspectives for the New Member States
8. Structural funds business support and employment growth in manufacturing: perspectives for the New Member States Luigi Moretti* INTRODUCTION AND MOTIVATION 1. The Structural and Cohesion Funds (SCF) are the European Union’s (EU) financial instruments for the achievement of social and economic cohesion through the reduction of disparities between the levels of development of the regions (art. 130a-b Treaty of European Union). The SCF finance and support a variety of investments affecting regions’ business environment and capital endowment through a variety of channels. For instance, the SCF can potentially create better public infrastructure, improve workforce skills and the capacity to adapt, help the reconversion process of declining industries, or improve the availability of funds to increase productivity and production capability through R&D and direct business support. Overall the SCF account for almost two thirds of the EU budget, and one of the main areas of expenditure is business support (about one fifth of the overall funds allocation across EU-27 in 2007–2013); this is the financial scheme geared to directly assist large business organizations, small and medium enterprises and the craft sectors, and the adoption of research technology, development and innovation activities (RTDI). This chapter illustrates the impact of SCF business support on manufacturing performance in a sample of regions belonging to the eight New Member States from Central and Eastern Europe that joined the EU in 2004 (NMS-8) and, in particular, it has the aim of extending the analysis proposed by Florio and Moretti (2009), who investigate the...
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