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European Regional Development Fund

Volume 518: debated on Thursday 18 November 2010

15. What assessment he has made of the effects of the abolition of regional development agencies on access to unspent funding from the European regional development fund. (24735)

My Department is working with the Department for Communities and Local Government to develop new delivery structures for the European regional development fund to replace the RDAs. We aim to ensure that the programmes continue to be implemented with minimal disruption.

I thank the Minister for his reply. In the west midlands, £113 million of ERDF money is still as yet unallocated. About 40% has historically been allocated to projects through the regional development agency, but the RDA is now to go, and there is no sign on the horizon of an alternative delivery mechanism. Can the Minister assure us that mechanisms will be found to spend that money before 2013, or will it go to the Treasury?

That money will be spent. Local enterprise partnerships and local authorities can apply for it, and we intend to announce a new delivery mechanism next spring.