Additional to What? Does the U.K. Government Cheat on the European Regional Development Fund?

Date01 October 1983
Published date01 October 1983
DOI10.1111/j.1467-9256.1983.tb00080.x
20
Simon
&IZmer
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-0-000-0-
ADDITIONAL
TO
WHAT?
DOES
THE
U,K,
GOVERNMENT
CHEAT
ON
THE
EUROPEAN
REGIONAL
DEVELOPMENT
FUND?
CHRISTOPHER
PRESTON
Since 1975 the
EEC,
through the European Regional Development
Fund
(ERDF)
has
been
disbursing fund6 to
tha
poorest
regions
of
the
Community's member-states.
As
the
principle instrument of the EEC's regional policy the
Fund
has
contributed to the
development of industrial and infrastructure projects in regions from Sicily
to
the
Shetlands, yet despite widely shared perceptions of regional problems, the role of
the Regional
Fund
in
helping to solve them has been one of continuing controversy.
This paper examines one of the most contentious aspects of Community funding for
regional development, the problem of 'additionality'
,
for while the concept features
prominently in
most
discussions of the Regional
Fund,
it
has been variously defined
and interpreted, often for ingeniously self interested reasons.
It
is therefore
appropriate to examine additionality in its political context for it is an issue
of concern
to
boththeCommunity and the member-states and thereby sheds light
on
the
policy orientations
and
capabilities of
both.
to
all ten member-states
this
paper concentrates in particular on the United Kingdom's
experience which has in recent years been scrutinised by various Parliamentary
Committees
and
has therefore been the subject of some publicity
and
debate.l
Though the fundamental issues relate
Defining
additionality
added
to
those given by the member-states, through their own financial instruments
for regional development projects.
to make an obvious distinction between funds
from
Brussels
and
member-states
so
that
arguments
about
the relative efficacy of national
and
Community policy measures can be
clearly and separately articulated.
point
to
the distinctiveness
of
their regional contributions. Table
1
shows the
increase in the size
of
the
ERDF
from 1975 to
1980.
The importance of additionality
has grown witkthe size of the fund.
of the
Fund,
second only
to
Italy's 40 per cent.
This
is a reflection of the high
priority the
UK
Government
put
on establishing a Regional
Fund
after accession
in
1973
and the Commission has therefore been keen to see the Government substantiate
its commitment by accepting Community strictures
on
how
it
uses
Fund
monies.
The principle of additionality was enshrined in the preamble
to
the original
Fund
Regulation which states
that:
'Whereas the Fund's assistance should not lead
member states
to
reduce their
own
regional development efforts should complement these
efforts.'2
In
addition, Article
6
para.
6
of the Regulation charges member-states with
providing the Commission with information
on:
'the resources which they have decided
to
allocate
or
which they propose to allocate to the development of these regions.'
At
its simplest additionality is the principle
that
community resources should be
At
the most common-sense level,therefore,it seeks
Both member-states and the Community can thereby
As
can be seen, the
UK
has a
28
per cent share

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