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NextGenerationEU: European Commission endorses positive preliminary assessment of Italy's request for €21 billion disbursement under the Recovery and Resilience Facility

The European Commission yesterday endorsed a positive preliminary assessment of Italy's second payment request for €21 billion, of which €10 billion of grants and €11 billion of loans (net of pre-financing) under the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF), the key instrument at the heart of NextGenerationEU.

On 28 June 2022, Italy submitted to the Commission a payment request based on the achievement of the 45 milestones and targets selected in the Council Implementing Decision for the second instalment. They cover reforms in the areas of public employment (as part of a broader reform of public administration), public procurement, teaching profession, tax administration and territorial healthcare. The payment request includes investments in key policy areas including ultra-broadband and 5G, research and innovation, tourism and culture, hydrogen, urban regeneration and digitalisation of schools. This payment request also includes an investment to support the reform of the justice system and reduce the backlog of cases.

With their request, the Italian authorities provided detailed and comprehensive evidence demonstrating the fulfilment of the 45 milestones and targets. The Commission has thoroughly assessed this information before presenting its positive preliminary assessment of the payment request.

The Italian recovery and resilience plan includes a wide range of investment and reform measures in six thematic areas (the so-called “Missions”). The plan will be supported by €191.6 billion, €69 billion in grants and €122.6 billion in loans, 13% of which (€9 billion in grants and €15.9 billion in loans) was disbursed to Italy in pre-financing on 13 August 2021. Moreover, a first payment worth €21 billion was disbursed to Italy on 13 April 2022.

Payments under the RRF are performance-based and contingent on Member States implementing the investments and reforms outlined in their respective recovery and resilience plans.

Next steps

The Commission has now sent its positive preliminary assessment of Italy's fulfilment of the milestones and targets required for this payment to the Economic and Financial Committee (EFC), asking for its opinion. The EFC's opinion, to be delivered within a maximum of four weeks, should be taken into account in the Commission's assessment. Following the EFC's opinion, the Commission will adopt the final decision on the disbursement of the financial contribution, in accordance with the examination procedure, through a comitology committee. Following the adoption of the decision by the Commission, the disbursement to Italy can take place.

The Commission will assess further payment requests by Italy based on the fulfilment of the milestones and targets outlined in the Council Implementing Decision, reflecting progress on the implementation of the investments and reforms.

The amounts disbursed to the Member States are published in the Recovery and Resilience Scoreboard, which shows progress of the implementation of the national recovery and resilience plans.

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