Since the COVID-19 outbreak in Europe, the EU has launched the Corona Response Investment Initiative (CRII). This initiative helps European regions deal with this unprecedented health crisis which has also already had significant economic and social effects.  

Two new regulations

Two regulations that amend the existing legal framework of the European Structural and Investment funds come with this initiative:

  1. The regulation “CRII” (EU) no. 2020/460 
  2. The regulation “CRII Plus” (EU) no 2020/558

What does this mean for Managing Authorities?

Thanks to these two regulations, Managing Authorities gain more flexibility.

For Managing Authorities of ERDF programmes this means for example that:

  • They will be able to finance projects that are “fostering investment necessary for strengthening the crisis response capacities in health services” under  the investment priority 1 (research and innovation) because its thematic scope has been extended;
  • They can use ERDF to provide temporary financial support to the working capital of SMEs affected by the crisis, through grants or financial instruments;
  • The co-financing rate for reimbursement from the European Commission to the programme applicable on the level of one or several priority axes can be increased to 100% during this exceptional period from July 2020 until June 2021 (subject to EC approval);
  • It is possible to shift funding among categories of regions, funds (ERDF, ESF and Cohesion Fund), and programme priorities within certain limits in a simplified way. It allows Managing Authorities to redirect funding where it is needed most; 
  • Administrative steps linked to programme implementation, reporting, use of financial instruments and audit are also lightened. More liquidity is gained because the annual pre-financing of 2019 will not be recovered during the closure of the 2018/2019 accounts but only at the end of the programming period.

More information

You can find the full details on the European Commission website: