On Wednesday, 12 October 2015, EAPB held a workshop on ”Financial Instruments under ESIF (2014-2020) – Public banks sharing experiences and best practices” on the occasion of the Open Days 2016. The Open Days is a series of around 100 seminars, workshops, which are organised by the Committee of the Regions (CoR) and the European Commission's Directorate General for Regional and Urban Policy (DG Regio). The workshop brought together over 140 representatives from national and regional governments, EU-Member States, EU Institutions as well as from various stakeholder organisations (banking sector Industry and SME associations).

The workshop`s agenda included contributions from Mr. Csaba Harsányi, Director - Brussels Representative Office at the Hungarian Development Bank; Mr. Dariusz Wieloch, Deputy Director of Financial Instruments Department at the Gospodarstwa Krajowego BGK, Poland and Mr. Marcel Roy, Secretary General at the European Association of Public Banks. The workshop showcased experience gained and good practices of public banks implementing programmes supported under the European Structural and Investment Funds.The 4 outtakes of the workshop include:

  • Simplify the legal framework for public banks: The legal framework public banks are currently facing is too complicated. Eleven guidelines have to be taken into account. Rules (eg for public procurement) are often not flexible enough. At times regulation is even contradictory. Less bureaucracy would entail huge benefits;
  • A special regulatory treatment for public banks: Public banks differ from commercial banks, the most obvious difference being that they are not profit oriented. Their anti-cyclical behavior has been acknowledged by the European Commission. Public banks can even act to reinvigorate the market in times of crisis. Their different nature should be taken into account in the regulatory treatment.
  • The trend away from grants to financial instruments is to be welcomed: Using financial instruments rather than grants is far more efficient and enables public banks to use funds more than once. It also ensures a level playing field for companies. However, the institutional set-up should be adapted to take into account this recent trend. Ex-ante assessments, justified when handing out grants, seem less appropriate when it comes to financial instruments.
  • Facilitate the blending of different funds: At this point in time, combining resources from different sources (EFSI, ESIF, COSME, Innovfin) turns out to be rather difficult in practice. Huge benefits are to be expected if obstacles were to be removed.

Feel free to access the pictures of the workshop here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/euwrc/sets/7215767162871184 

Please find the presentation download links below:

Presentation MFB

Presentation BGK

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