Answer to Written Question: Need to support tourism in EU island countries

(Source: European Parliament)

EN

E-000302/2021

E-000409/2021

Answer given by Mr Breton

on behalf of the European Commission

(31.5.2021)

The Commission adopted a number of measures to support the economy, including the EU tourism ecosystem, to help reopening borders and restart travelling[1].

Thanks to the Temporary Framework for State Aid[2] Member States could set up in record time more than 330 support schemes which are also open to the tourism and travel industry (1/3 of them specifically focusing on these sectors), including 6 schemes for Cyprus and 5 for Malta.

Tourism sectors benefit from CRII and CRII+[3] allowing the flexible deployment of unused resources from Cohesion Funds 2014-20, including support the working capital of small and medium-sized enterprises and employment schemes. REACT-EU[4] will bring additional funding, which Member States can use to support most affected sectors like tourism.

In 2021-2027, the ERDF[5] will support tourism sector thanks to a new dedicated objective. SURE[6] is providing assistance to job-supporting schemes[7] and the ESF+[8] will finance the up- and re-skilling of workers; the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund[9] could help displaced workers. Under the Recovery and Resilience Facility[10], Member States can include in their national plans measures for the modernisation of tourism sector.

Besides actions to provide citizens with reliable information (Re-open EU[11]) or restore confidence (passenger rights[12]), the Commission promotes a coordinated approach to free movement restrictions within the EU[13]. It also works on the reopening of EU external borders, which is important for Member States with a high share of international travellers. The Council Recommendation on the temporary restriction on non-essential travel into the EU[14] was amended on 1 February 2021. Finally, EU agencies were asked to issue guidance to facilitate air transport and cruise ship operations[15].


[1] https://ec.europa.eu/info/live-work-travel-eu/coronavirus-response/travel-during-coronavirus-pandemic_en;  

[2] https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/ip_21_261

[3] https://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/en/newsroom/news/2020/04/04-02-2020-coronavirus-response-investment-initiative-plus-new-actions-to-mobilise-essential-investments-and-resources

[4] https://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/en/newsroom/coronavirus-response/react-eu   

[5] European Regional Development Fund

[6] European instrument for temporary Support to mitigate Unemployment Risks in an Emergency

[7] https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX%3A32020D1346

[8] European Social Fund+ regulation to be published later in 2021

[9] EGF regulation to be published later in 2021

[10] https://ec.europa.eu/info/business-economy-euro/recovery-coronavirus/recovery-and-resilience-facility_en

[11] https://reopen.europa.eu/en

[12] https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/IP_20_485

[13] https://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2020/10/13/covid-19-council-adopts-a-recommendation-to-coordinate-measures-affecting-free-movement/

[14] https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/48152/st_5712_2021_rev_2_en.pdf

[15] https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/publications-data/guidelines-covid-19-testing-and-quarantine-air-travellers; http://www.emsa.europa.eu/publications/inventories/item/4273-covid-19-eu-guidance-for-cruise-ship-operations.html

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