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Eligible E.U. Regions - The Objectives

Regions are classified for financial support depending on the economic difficulties that they encounter. There are three different groups, called objectives that receive financial support from the Structural Funds. The most significant objective in terms of resources allocated is Objective 1.

Objective 1
Helping regions to catch up if their development is lagging behind, i.e. providing them with the basic infrastructure or encouraging investments in business economic activity. (These regions G.D.P. per capita is 75% or less than the E.U. average).

Objective 2
Supporting economic and social conversion in industrial, rural, urban or fisheries-dependent areas facing structural difficulties.

Objective 3
Modernising systems of training and promoting employment. Measures financed by Objective 3 cover the whole Union except for the Objective 1 regions where measures for training and employment are included in the catching-up programmes.

Under the previous rounds of Structural Funds all of Ireland was classified as an Objective 1 region. Given the country’s economic performance, parts of Ireland have now exceeded the eligibility criteria for Objective 1 status. For the current programming period Ireland has been designated into two N.U.T.S. II regions.

  1. Border, Midland and Western Region (B.M.W.) will remain an Objective 1 region.
  2. Southern and Eastern Region (S&E) is classified as a transitional Objective 1 region (which means the S&E still qualifies for E.U. support but on a sliding and declining scale.)
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