On 26 September the Representation of the European region Tyrol - South Tyrol - Trentino hosted a meeting of the ERRIN Working Grioup on Innovation & Investments. The meeting's agenda included two speakers: Mr. Riccardo Honorati Bianchi, Permanent Representative of Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP) the Italian National Promotion Institution and Mr. Thomas de Béthune, member of the European Commission’s Unit of DG REGIO in charge for financial instruments and for the relations with International financial institutions.

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Mr. Honorati Bianchi gave an overview of the role of CDP in the implementation of the Juncker Plan and more specifically of EFSI in Italy stressing in particular some lessons learnt in the first year of EFSI implementation from the perspective of a National Promotional Instituion (NPI). Further on his presentation focussed on the changes and novelties of EFSI 2.0 in light of the recently published proposal of the European Commission to extend and strengthen it. Finally, Mr. Honorati Bianchi presented several initiatives in support of SMEs undertaken by CDP namely for the creation of investment platforms. The latter are the tool foreseen by the Commission in order to pool smaller projects and catalyse investments on them, thus allowing them to also benefit of the guarantee mechanism put in place through EFSI.

Mr. de Béthune briefly introduced scope and functioning of financial instruments in the framework of the implementation of European Investment and Structural Funds (ESIF). He highlighted that financial instruments and their use is not an objective of the Commission but it is rather one of the methods available for the implementation of the programs within the cohesion policy (but not only). Further on the presentation focussed on the illustration of principles and characteristics of so called “off-the-shelf” financial instruments, which are instruments with standard terms and conditions set up by the European Commission and the the EIB/FEI in order to help and simplify the work of managing authorities in Member States and regions in their implementation. In particular, Mr. de Béthune introduced in details the two new "off-the-shelf” instruments launched by the Commission last summer respectively a co-investment fund to support start-up and SMEs and a fund for urban development.

Presentation Honorati Bianchi – CDP

Presentation de Béthune – DG REGIO

Tags: Event englishRegional Policy engResearch and Innovation engSingle markets and SMEs_enginvestments enTrentino