Romania has its disposal over 572 million euro as funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) for 2014-2020, for projects aimed at social inclusion and poverty reduction, said on Tuesday, in Brussels, European Commissioner for Regional Policy Corina Cretu (photo), the European Commission’s Representation Office in Romania informs through a press release.
The statement was made in the context of the commissioner’s meeting with Romania’s Minister of Labor, Family, Social Protection and Elderly, Dragos Pislaru. The two officials discussed on the national anti-poverty package, the Urban Agenda and the integration of marginalized communities.
‘To ensure effective implementation it is extremely important to have a good coordination between the ERDF and the European Social Fund. The relevant ministries and management authorities must step up efforts to start as soon as possible the planned interventions,’ added Cretu.
Corina Cretu also stressed the fact that the national anti-poverty package can attract funds from several operational programmes, especially from the Regional Operational Programme and the Operational Programme ‘Human Capital’ to find solutions to challenges such as early dropping out of school, poverty, social exclusion, as well as to the problems related to healthcare and housing.
‘The assessment of the needs is a prerequisite for prioritizing our investments. In this regard, Romania has made progress in identifying the areas to be targeted by the current initiatives to de-institutionalize disabled people. We expect these efforts be extended also to child protection,’ added the senior European official.
The rate of the people at risk of poverty or social exclusion in Romania is almost 40 per cent, according to Eurostat. The most affected are vulnerable categories, with half of the children in Romania being exposed to the risk of poverty, according to the same source.
The 2014-2020 programming period is aimed at providing better living conditions for 75,000 children, 10,000 disabled people and 62,000 elderly through rehabilitating the infrastructure of social services