On 11 February 1999, during the second national consultation on the reform of the Structural Funds, Pierre Moscovici, French Minister for European Affairs, outlines the state of negotiations on the objectives of the European Structural Funds.
In February 1999, Eneko Landaburu Illarramendi, Director-General of the European Commission’s DG XVI for Regional Policy and Cohesion, comments on the provisions in Agenda 2000 and highlights the issues surrounding European economic and social cohesion policy.
On 30 March 1999, following the Berlin European Council, the French daily newspaper Le Figaro considers the issues involved in the allocation of the European Structural Funds and takes a closer look at the case of Spain.
‘Sorry, Sir, but all those with the Cohesion Fund must sit up in the pigeon loft.’ Spanish cartoonists Ventura and El Burladero take an ironic look at Spain’s status as a net beneficiary compared to that of Germany, France and the United Kingdom.
On 11 December 1998, the French daily newspaper Le Monde outlines the issues involved in the reform of the European Structural Funds and considers the difficulty of establishing a new allocation scheme for aid to the most disadvantaged regions of the European Union.
On 26 October 1999, the French daily newspaper Le Monde analyses the objectives of and the conditions for granting aid from the three European Structural Funds: the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), the European Social Fund (ESF) and the European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF).
In December 2002, the French Government drafts a memorandum in which it proposes a reform of the economic and social cohesion policy in an enlarged European Union on the basis of three general principles.
On 23 June 2004, in a meeting chaired by Anne Anderson, Permanent Representative of Ireland to the European Union, Jacques Barrot, European Commissioner for Regional Policy, Stavros Dimas, European Commissioner for Employment and Social Affairs, Franz Fischler, European Commissioner for Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries, Péter Bálazs, Shadow European Commissioner to Jacques Barrot, and Sandra Kalniete, Shadow European Commissioner to Franz Fischler, endorse development programmes implemented in support of the 10 new Member States of the European Union under ‘The Structural Funds 2004–2006’ together with the Permanent Representatives of Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia.