World Cancer Day: Commissioner Kyriakides co-organises high-level conference on cancer in Stockholm tomorrow

Tomorrow, ahead of the World Cancer Day 2023 on 4 February, Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Stella Kyriakides, co-organises a high-level hybrid conference on cancer titled ‘Equity, excellence and innovation: modern cancer care for all, Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan – eradicating inequalities within cancer care’. The conference is organised in partnership with the Swedish Presidency.

Commissioner Kyriakides; Acko Ankarberg Johansson, Swedish Minister for Health Care; Dr Hans Kluge, WHO Regional Director for Europe; Douglas R. Lowy, Principal Deputy Director of the US National Cancer Institute; and Carolina Darias San Sebastián, Minister of Health in Spain will deliver keynote speeches. Afterwards, patients will be given the floor to share their experiences. Various discussions will then take place on a comprehensive approach to cancer prevention, the importance of early detection and the role of health data for delivering modern and equitable cancer care. The conference is an opportunity to take stock of the deliverables under Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan to date, including the new Council Recommendation on cancer screening, launch the 2023 Country Cancer Profiles of the European Cancer Inequalities Registry and set the scene for the year to come.

Follow the conference online (Code: #EUCancerPlan) and join the conversation on social media using #EUCancerPlan and #EU2023SE. The speech of Commissioner Kyriakides will be available here.

(For more information: Stefan De Keersmaecker – Tel.: +32 2 298 46 80; Celia Dejond – Tel.: +32 2 298 81 99)

Single Market turns 30: Commission’s reports confirm the Single Market underpins Europe’s ability to tackle key challenges

Today, the Commission has published the 2023 Annual Single Market Report and the 2022 Single Market Scoreboard, as part of activities to mark the 30th anniversary of the Single Market. The reports confirm that the Single Market remains a key tool to address Europe’s current challenges and highlight the importance of continuously improving its functioning, as well as highlighting the Single Market’s impact in terms of increased added value for the EU’s economy.

Both reports will provide input for discussions with Member States on strengthening the Single Market and will inform the Commission’s future work to ensure the Single market meets its full potential in supporting the resilience and competitiveness of the European economy.

The 2023 Annual Single Market Report (ASMR) takes stock of the integration of the Single Market and analyses how it helps Europe to navigate current geopolitical tensions, improve EU competitiveness and support the green and digital transitions of our economy.

The 2022 Single Market Scoreboard shows how the Single Market benefits the EU economy. It provides a detailed overview of how EU Single Market rules were applied across the European Economic Area, with the objective of identifying improvements for the Single Market. The Scoreboard focuses on the progress made in implementing EU law, overall business conditions, integration of the Single Market and other major policy goals like growth and jobs, resilience, digital and green economy.

A press release is available here.

(For more information: Sonya Gospodinova – Tel.: +32 2 296 69 53; Federica Miccoli – Tel.: +32 2 295 83 00)

State aid: Commission approves €60 million Greek scheme to support the primary agricultural sector in the context of Russia’s war against Ukraine

The European Commission has approved a €60 million Greek scheme to support the primary agricultural production sector in the context of the Russia’s war against Ukraine. The scheme was approved under the State Aid State Temporary Crisis Framework, adopted by the Commission on 23 March 2022 and amended on 20 July 2022 and on 28 October 2022.

Under the scheme, the aid will take the form of direct grants. The purpose of the scheme is to compensate the eligible beneficiaries for part of the additional costs incurred especially due to the fertilisers price increase and to help them overcome their financial difficulties linked to the current geopolitical crisis.

The Commission found that the Greek scheme is in line with the conditions set out in the Temporary Crisis Framework. In particular, the aid (i) will not exceed €250,000 per beneficiary; and (ii) will be granted no later than 31 December 2023. The Commission concluded that the scheme is necessary, appropriate and proportionate to remedy a serious disturbance in the economy of a Member State, in line with Article 107(3)(b) TFEU and the conditions set out in the Temporary Crisis Framework. On this basis, the Commission approved the scheme under EU State aid rules.

More information on the Temporary Crisis Framework and other actions taken by the Commission to address the economic impact of Russia’s war against Ukraine can be found here. The non-confidential version of the decision will be made available under the number SA.105295 in the State aid register on the Commission’s competition website once any confidentiality issues have been resolved.

EU Cohesion Policy: European Structural and Investment Funds supported SMEs, employment of millions of people and clean energy production

In 2014-2020, the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESI Funds) unleashed a total investment of €731 billion, of which €535 billion was funded by the EU, fostering lasting socio-economic convergence, territorial cohesion, social Europe and a smooth green and digital transition.

This is explained in the 2022 Summary Report on the Implementation of the ESI Funds adopted by the Commission.

The report presents the achievements of the ESI Funds by the end of 2021:

More than 4 million small and medium businesses (SMEs) were supported;

55.2 million people were supported through employment, social inclusion or skills and education actions;

Energy production capacity was increased by more than 3,600 megawatt hours/year resulting from renewable energy resources whilst the annual primary energy consumption of public buildings was reduced by 2.6 terawatt hours/year (equivalent to the amount of electricity consumed by around 720,000 households for a whole year);

2.3 million projects supported the agricultural sector and rural SMES becoming more competitive, and helped create jobs in rural areas;

In the fishing and aquaculture sector 44,000 jobs were maintained and more than 6,000 new jobs were created.

ESI Funds were also at the frontline of the support to Member States and Regions to face the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic impact.

Thanks to temporary flexibilities introduced into Cohesion Policy in the wake of the health emergency, Member States were given the possibility to re-allocate unspent Cohesion Policy funds to priority areas such as healthcare, short-time work schemes and support to SMEs.

ESI Funds have been distributed since the outbreak of the pandemic in 2020 and 2021 to cover the emerging needs of medical institutions, researchers, business owners, employees, and vulnerable people. Moreover, ESI funds helped to train millions of people with low skills, many of them gaining formal qualifications.

Finally, ESI Funds were central in boosting energy efficiency measures and renewables, building renovation and market integration, as key drivers of the EU’s energy security. Cohesion Policy helped Member States and regions to tackle energy poverty while reducing GHG emissions and creating sustainable jobs in the construction and building sector.


The Annual Summary report of ESI Funds covering implementation in 2014-2020 is a requirement as per Article 53 of Regulation (EU) No 1303/2013. This year’s report presents the evolution in the financial implementation of the ESI Funds of the 2014-2020 period up to the end of 2021. The 2014-2020 financial period end at the end of 2023 under the so-called N+3 rule.

As one of the largest investment instruments under the EU budget, the ESI Funds support the territorial, economic and social cohesion of Europe’s regions, as well as their resilience and recovery from the crisis faced in the past years.

They comprise of:

the European Regional Development Fund;

the European Social Fund;

the Cohesion Fund;

the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development

the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund.

The policy objectives pursued with the ESI Funds include:

research and innovation

digital technologies

supporting the low-carbon economy

sustainable management of natural resources

small businesses

smart, sustainable and inclusive growth,

employment, better education and training,

strengthening the institutional capacity of public administration,

urban development and territorial cooperation (Interreg).

Source: Cyprus News Agency