2020.03.02 10:28

EU climate funds may focus on Lithuania's regional cities

Vaidotas Beniušis, BNS2020.03.02 10:28

The EU’s climate change funds could be directed to Kaunas, Telšiai and Šiauliai regions due to their high-emission economies, according to the European Commission.

In a report published last week, the Commission says “these are a very important source of employment with almost 4,500 people employed directly and large numbers working in the supporting businesses”.

Read more: Lithuania offered €97m from EU's Just Transition Fund for carbon neutrality

"Based on this preliminary assessment, it appears warranted that the Just Transition Fund concentrates its intervention on these geographical areas," the Commission says.

All EU member states, except for Poland, have made the commitment to transition to a climate-neutral economy by 2050.

The EC proposes establishing the Just Transition Fund to mitigate social and economic impacts, especially on communities dependent on fossil fuels.

Some 97 million euros will be allocated to Lithuania, sources have told BNS.

The money should be spent on creating advanced technology and establishing new enterprises, as well as upgrading and changing the workers' qualifications, the Commission says.

Poland would benefit the most from the new fund with 2 billion euros. Germany would also receive a large share of the fund – 877 million euros, according to EurActiv, followed by Romania (757 million euros), the Czech Republic (581 million euros).

The member states will have to draw up action plans to receive the funds.

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