On 11 March 2021, negotiators from the Council and the European Parliament reached a provisional agreement on the second edition of the EU’s flagship programme the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF).

CEF 2.0 will continue to fund key projects in the areas of transport, digital and energy, emphasising synergies between them. It will promote cross-sectoral work in areas such as connected and automated mobility and alternative fuels. The CEF financial contribution comes mainly in the form of grants, with different co-financing rates depending on the project type.

In the field of transport, CEF2.0 will promote interconnected and multimodal networks to develop and modernise railway, road, but also inland waterways and maritime infrastructure, as well as mobility.  It will support the twin green and digital transition, by contributing to the ambitious targets for the European Green Deal and the Digital Decade.

If you want to learn more about CEF exact support for inland waterway sector, please have a look at this comprehensive overview for the period of 2014-2017: Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) Inland Waterways Portfolio 

CEF 2.0 will run from 2021 to 2027, with a significant overall budget of EUR 33.71 billion!

The budgets for each sector will be (in current prices):

  • transport: EUR 25.81 billion (including €11.29 billion for cohesion countries)
  • energy: EUR 5.84 billion
  • digital: EUR 2.06 billion

Pedro Nuno Santos, Portuguese Minister for Infrastructure and Housing & President of the Council, said: ‘The substantial funding must and will continue. It is especially important for overcoming COVID-19-related challenges and tackling climate change.

Priority will be given to further development of the trans-European transport networks (TEN-T), focusing on missing links and cross-border projects with an EU added value. Please, remember that until 5 May 2021, there is open public consultation on the TEN-T revised guidelines!

The provisional agreement is subject to approval by the Council and has been submitted to the Council’s Permanent Representatives Committee (Coreper) for endorsement. Once adopted by both the Council and the European Parliament, the CEF Regulation will enter into force the day after its publication in the EU Official Journal. It will apply retroactively from 1 January 2021.

Source: European Council