EU Regional Policy or EU Cohesion Policy


Regional Policy is the EU’s main investment policy

Regional Policy targets all regions and cities in the European Union in order to support job creation, business competitiveness, economic growth, sustainable development, and improve citizens’ quality of life.

In order to reach these goals and address the diverse development needs in all EU regions, € 351.8 billion – almost a third of the total EU budget – has been set aside for Cohesion Policy for 2014-2020.


Regional Policy is delivered through three main funds: the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), the Cohesion Fund (CF) and the European Social Fund (ESF).



Cohesion (Regional) Policy serves Europe 2020 Strategy


The five targets for the EU in 2020 are:

1.    Employment: 75%of the 20-64 year-olds to be employed

2.    Research & Development: 3% of the EU's GDP to be invested in R&D

3.    Climate change and energy sustainability:

  •  Greenhouse gas emissions 20% (or even 30%, if the conditions are right)
  • 20% of energy from renewables
  • 20 % increase of energy efficiency

4.    Education:

  • Reducing the rates of early school leavers below 10%
  • At least 20 million fewer people in or at risk of poverty and social exclusion

5.    Fighting poverty and social exclusion: At least 20 million fewer people in or at risk of poverty and social exclusion



National dimension

Each Member State has adopted its own national targets in these areas. 

The national targets as set out in the National Reform Programmes (NRP) in April 2014.


European Commission > Regional Policy> In your Country> Eligible areas

cf. Page for Greece