Algarve will have more than double the European funds between 2021 and 2027

300 of the 778 million euros are intended for the diversification of the Algarve's economic activity

The Algarve will have direct access to 778 million euros in European funds between 2021 and 2027, the next funding period, more than double the amount allocated to the CRESC Algarve 2020 Operational Programme, currently in force.

The preview of the funds that will be destined to the region in the multiannual financial framework of the European Union 2021-2027 was made on Monday by José Apolinário, president of the Algarve's Regional Coordination and Development Commission (CCDR), in a meeting with journalists, where he also an assessment was made of the progress of CRESC Algarve 2020.

Despite having made these values ​​public, José Apolinário stressed that the 778 million euros are a "reference amount" and "only in the first quarter of 2022 should there be a closed framework", with the process still in progress.

What is already certain is that there will be a strong increase in community funds for the region, mainly motivated by the additional amount of 300 million euros that the European Union will allocate to the region, to diversify the economic base, in what will be a kind of regional “bazooka” of funds to deal with the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic.

But, even without this additional budget, the future Operational Program for the Algarve 2021-27 would always have an associated amount greater than the 318 million euros of the current one.


José Apolinário – Photo: Hugo Rodrigues | Sul Informação


In ERDF cohesion funds alone, €400 million will be earmarked for the region. These are joined by 78 million from the European Social Fund (ESF).

In the case of the “extra” 300 million euros, they were “achieved by proposal of the Portuguese Government at the European Council of 21 July 2020, to boost competitiveness, growth and job creation within the scope of the Investment in Employment and in Growth, aiming to contribute to the diversification of economic activity in the Region».

The projects to be supported will have to be in line with the Algarve's smart specialization strategy (RIS3 Algarve).

"Sea and endogenous resources", "Renewable energies and energy efficiency", "Sustainable agroindustry and biotechnology", "Health, longevity and active aging", "ICT and cultural and creative industries", "Green jobs" and "Specialization and competitiveness of business reception areas” are the seven areas chosen for the RIS3 Algarve.

As the Algarve is a transition region, «the average contribution rate is 60 percent».

“For the future, we need, above all, companies and the diversification of the economic base. But that can't be achieved with a snap of the fingers», affirmed José Apolinário.

"We are all aware that, for the benefit of the region and the Algarve's economy, we need more companies and more investments to diversify the economic base," he added.

In this way, «the first concern is to get good investments».

This premise is valid for the objective of diversifying the region's economic base, but also with regard to the projects to be supported with ERDF funds, which are broader than those of the regional “bazooka”.

According to the forecast put forward by José Apolinário, 40% of these 400 million euros will be for science and companies, under a heading entitled “A smarter Europe”.

For the support line called “A more resilient Europe”, which includes areas such as “climate and risks, soft mobility and renewable energies”, 30% of the ERDF funds of the future program will be earmarked.

There will also be a 25% share for "municipalities, parishes, services of general interest and partnerships for cohesion", in the line "A closer Europe".

The Algarve will also have money for sustainable urban development.

The 78 million euros from the European Social Fund are earmarked for "qualification, employment and social inclusion", under the heading "A more social Europe".