Adapted supports schemes that correspond to sparsely populated areas
The sparsely populated areas in the NSPA region have territorial conditions that make them particularly vulnerable, such as long distances and a sparse and aging population. A lack of critical mass and a small home market also imply that micro-companies are very much dependent on the ability to engage with larger companies to stimulate innovation capacity. These specific territorial conditions call for adapted support schemes. The NSPA appreciates the specific measures and exemptions that are in place within the current state aid regulations and stress the importance to maintain the substance for also updated guidelines. The state aid regulations complement the structural funds and are an important tool to compensate for regional disadvantages. Investments in connectivity, such as infrastructure and broadband, are particularly relevant for remote regions with long distances. The NSPA also urges for a continuation of the definitions that the EU has settled concerning regions with specific territorial conditions.
More flexible state aid regulations to enable the double transition
NSPA supports more flexible state aid regulations with an increase of maximum intensity to address the EU goals for a green and digital economy. This double transition - together with the actions to tackle the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic - will require investments to, for instance, phase out old technologies and production methods. This can increase the need for subsidies and state aid. However, the need may be even bigger in sparsely populated areas with an overall vulnerable business ecosystem, as seen in the NSPA area. Therefore, the NSPA calls for more permanent specific targeted support that takes these specific conditions into account.
Read the entire position here.