The Innovation and Networks Executive Agency (INEA) of the European Commission issued an information note addressed to Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) beneficiaries, which analyzes all the changes concerning the specific projects due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
INEA’s announcement contained the following information:
- So far INEA has not received any supplementary payment credits and will therefore need to manage all measures in the context of the existing budget margins.
- Increase of first pre-financing: The following increases have been determined for each sector:
- Transport: The first pre-financing under the MAP 2019 call (=reflow 1) is aligned (increase to 50% from 40%) and the selected beneficiaries will be informed individually during the preparation of the Grant Agreement.
- Energy: The first pre-financing under the 2020 call is raised to 50% and a corrigendum has already been published on the call page.
- Telecom/DSI: The first pre-financing is aligned (increase to 60% from 50%) both for the second batch of the 2019 calls and for all 2020 calls. The selected beneficiaries will be informed individually during the preparation of the Grant Agreement, while a corrigendum regarding the in progress first batch of the 2020 calls has already been published on the call page.
- Further pre-financing for Actions with multiple installments in transport and energy: The ASR-exercise was particularly successful in respect of punctual submission of the reports, without being negatively influenced by the Coronavirus. INEA is proceeding all payments of further pre-financings and anticipates a total of around 220 payments adding up to more than 1 billion EUR.
- Submission of interim payment requests in transport and energy: Beneficiaries wanting to receive further EU financing have the ability to submit their interim payment request instantly when INEA informs them about the finalization of each ASR assessment, without having to wait for the deadline of 31.08.2020. Besides, each year you can submit an interim payment request, while the Grant Agreement predicts a compulsory submission after two reporting exercises. Beneficiaries who reply fast to INEA’s requests about ex-ante controls, will receive their payments shortly.
- Possible extraordinary additional pre-financing: INEA has also explained whether it is able to provide any further pre-financing to the CEF beneficiaries that were mostly affected by the Coronavirus. As long as the conditions of each beneficiary and grant agreement within the whole CEF portfolio vary significantly, INEA cannot establish a dedicated scheme. Private beneficiaries, nevertheless, who are in urgent need and are not entitled any national support scheme, might contact INEA to discover individually if they could receive a supplementary payment. Regarding multi-beneficiary grant agreements, the coordinator is the one who should communicate with INEA. INEA will handle independently all corresponding requests, according to budget availability.