Inclusive islands

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Становище на ЕИСК: Inclusive islands

Key points:

The EESC believes that:

  • a greater effort must be undertaken by the EU to recognise the uniqueness of the challenges facing islands;
  • key policy areas such as the Single Market, Competition Policy, Transport Policy, Rural Development Policy and Fisheries Policy, as well as EU initiatives and programmes supporting Education, Training, Youth and Sport Policies must be applied with a greater degree of flexibility when it comes to island economies;
  • the criteria used by Eurostat to define an island region should be reassessed;
  • people with disabilities, and more generally all people with disadvantages, must be given specific attention;
  • priority should be given to providing access to public services, promoting sustainable growth, and fostering full employment, competitiveness and cohesion in European islands;
  • islands and island regions often provide unique opportunities for clean energy solutions – all the efforts of the European Commission in this direction and more specifically the transition of islands to 100% clean energy solutions need to be supported;
  • it would be necessary to launch an in-depth study on the extra costs incurred by European islands;
  • all island regions or Member State islands should be considered as eligible for financing related to infrastructure in Cohesion Policy for post-2020;
  • a more appropriate legislative framework with respect to the application of state aid in islands and island regions should be defined by the Commission;
  • coordination via the Commission's Inter-service Group on Territorial and Urban Development needs to be intensified.