The main EU investment policy – Regional policy

Cohesion policy is the EU’s main investment policy

Cohesion policy targets all regions and cities of the European Union in order to support job creation, business competitiveness, economic growth, sustainable development and to improve citizens’ quality of life.
In order to achieve these objectives and to respond to the various development needs in all regions of the EU, €392 billion, almost a third of the total EU budget, has been earmarked for cohesion for 2021-2027.

Mode of funding delivery

Cohesion policy is implemented through specific funds:

In detail: 2021-2027 Cohesion Policy EU budget allocations

Cohesion policy and political priorities of the Commission

Cohesion policy has a strong impact in many areas. Its investments contribute to the achievement of many EU policy objectives and complement EU policies such as those dealing with education, employment, energy, environment, single market , research and innovation.
Projects funded in regions and cities contribute to the objectives of the Commission’s priorities, in particular:

Territorial dimension

The cohesion policy brings particular attention or investment tools to the territories to respond to specific issues:

Cohesion policy underpins European solidarity

The bulk of cohesion policy funding is concentrated on less developed European countries and regions to help them catch up and reduce the economic, social and territorial disparities that still exist in the EU.
The Just Transition Fund mitigates the socio-economic costs induced by the climate transition, supports economic diversification and the reconversion of the territories concerned, helps people to adapt to a changing labor market.
The effects of the coronavirus pandemic on the economic situation of EU regions are addressed by REACT-EU, the recovery aid for cohesion and the territories of Europe.


The objective of economic, social and territorial cohesion of the EU is defined in Articles 174 to 178 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union

Cohesion policy legislation 2021-2027

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