19 Jul 2015

McCarthy calls for EU Investment Strategy

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Clllr Kieran McCarthy, Plenary of the EU Committee of the Regions, July 2015

   Douglas Road Cork City Councillor Cllr Kieran McCarthy participated in the lively debate on innovation and enterprise in the recent July EU Committee of the Regions plenary in Brussels. Commissioner Carlos Moedas addressed the 350-member committee on the importance of research and development, Cohesion Policy and EU funding. His commission will provide funding to supporting SMEs, R&D and innovation, education, the low carbon economy, the environment, and developing infrastructure connecting EU citizens.

Cllr McCarthy addressing Commissioner Moedas called for each area of investment to be based on a well-defined strategy. “Investment in the field of R&D and innovation needs to be framed within a process of developing a vision and setting strategic priorities. Projects should follow strategies and not the other way around“. Cllr McCarthy also called for more emphasis to be put on soft forms of support, on supporting market-driven research and cooperation with businesses. He noted; “There is a risk of business-as-usual support for SMEs, instead of support being tailored to their needs and growth potential to ensure a more sustainable long term result“.

   The EU’s Committee of the Regions is the EU’s assembly of regional and local representatives from all 28 Member States. Its mission is to involve regional and local authorities in the EU’s decision-making process and to inform them about EU policies. The European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission consult the Committee in policy areas affecting regions and cities. There are 9 Irish members in the Committee of the Regions of which Cllr McCarthy is one.

Caption: Cllr Kieran McCarthy speaking at the recent EU Committee of the Regions July plenary in the European Parliament, Brussels.

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