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This is an important, must-read article published by the European Commission (EC). Check it out!
via European Commission – PRESS RELEASES – Press release – Investment Offensive for Europe: EU Task Force identifies 2,000 potential projects worth €1.3 trillion.
At last, Europe has started to act, rather than procrastinate. The numbers are truly enormous but so are the challenges.
Let me give you a flavor:
The Task Force report concludes that focusing on the right reforms, expanding the role of the private sector and developing an EU infrastructure market will help lift economic growth, competitiveness, employment and social wellbeing.
The Task Force has identified five priorities:
1. Improve the business environment
2. Develop national long-term investment plans
3. Provide technical assistance to help develop sound investment projects
4. Carry out value for money assessments
5. Promote innovative financial instruments
Personally, I would like to see a small number of extremely large, high-priority, projects fast-tracked, so that the benefits of major investment can start to spread across the wider economy.
On a more negative note, I worry about the process of identifying the projects. In particular:
- Are projects chosen because of their political sponsors?
- Are strategic projects given priority?
- Are projects ranked on their financial viability?
- How robust is the risk mitigation process?
- What processes will be deployed to protect against corruption?
- How will procurement processes ensure true value for money?