The Catalan Government today presented the study entitled “Catalan Participation in Competitive European Funds, 2021”, which analyses the funding received in Catalonia in 2021 through European competitive funding programmes.
After analysing more than twenty competitive European funding programmes, the study promoted by the Ministry for Foreign Action and European Union concluded that in 2021, 559 beneficiaries based in Catalonia, including entities and individuals, obtained 1.15 billion euros from competitive European funds. In this period, Catalonia achieved funding very similar to that of Finland (€1.22 bn) and higher than countries such as Latvia (€1.03 bn), Slovenia (€832.8 m), Estonia (€772.0 m), Sweden (€691.3 m) and Hungary (€657.8 m).
The study also includes a comparative analysis with the rest of the European Union. In 2021, Catalonia achieved similar funding in the Italian region of Lazio (€1.08 bn) and higher than regions such as Flanders (€667 m), Vienna (€368 m) or Bavaria (€347.6 m).
At national level, Catalonia led in terms of funding, ahead of the Community of Madrid and the Basque Country. In Catalonia, competitive European funds reached 33 counties and 119 Catalan municipalities. The counties with the greatest funding for these programmes were El Barcelonès, followed by El Vallès Occidental and El Baix Llobregat.
In 2021, 1,034 projects based in Catalonia received funding from competitive European funds. The main projects financed were linked to infrastructure, energy and transport; innovation, research and health; development cooperation and external action; and education, youth, training and employment.
In terms of specific funding programmes, the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER), managed by the European agency Fusion for Energy, based in Barcelona, received 74% of the transfers made to entities based in Catalonia. It was followed by the Horizon Europe programme, with which Catalonia ranked first among the autonomous communities with the most funds in this area, and then Erasmus+, the Humanitarian Aid Programme and the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF).
Competitive European funds
Competitive European funds are those managed directly by the European Commission or its executive agencies, without the intervention of third parties such as states. This type of funding represents around 20% of the EU budget for the period 2021-2027.
Thus, the study presented by the Catalan Government does not include resources from the NextGenerationEU funds, the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), the European Social Fund+ or aid for agriculture or fisheries, but does include the Horizon Europe, Life, Erasmus+ and Creative Europe programmes, among others.
The data for this study comes mainly from the Financial Transparency System (FTS) provided by the European Commission, which includes funding programmes managed directly by the European Commission and its executive agencies. In order to analyse Catalan participation in the Erasmus+ and European Solidarity Corps programmes, the databases provided by the institutions managing the programme were consulted.
See the study “Catalan Participation in Competitive European Funds, 2021”: https://exteriors.gencat.cat/ca/ambits-dactuacio/afers_exteriors/ue/fons_europeus/participacio/