Michael launches EU funds debate

A consultation to identify the top priorities for the spending of EUR9.4bn (£6.5bn) of EU structural funds across the UK has been launched by Alun Michael, Minister of State for Industry and the Regions.

Structural funds are used to promote regional development and employment.

The new priorities are expected to include a stronger focus on activities to support enterprise, innovation, and sustainable communities and development.

The funding, which is to cover the period 2007 to 2013, includes EUR2.6bn (£1.8bn) for the poorest areas of the UK, including Cornwall, west Wales and the valleys, and the highlands and islands.

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