Through the first Just Transition Fund (JTF) Programme adopted by the Commission yesterday, Greece will mobilise a total investment of €1.63 billion to alleviate the impact of the energy and climate transition on the local economy and society.
The Greek plan will benefit from grants amounting to €1.38 billion from the Just Transition Fund.
After being the first Member State to see its 2021-2027 Partnership Agreement approved, Greece is also the first country to have its Just Transition Fund Programme and plans adopted.
In the territories most affected by the energy and climate transition, the Programme will support de-carbonisation in Western Macedonia, Megalopolis and adjacent municipalities, and the phasing out of fossil fuel power stations in the islands of North-South Aegean and Crete. The JTF support will foster the diversification and modernization of the economy, including the creation of new jobs and the upskilling and reskilling of people affected by the transition.
Just over half of the funds will support entrepreneurship through the financing of existing and new enterprises, of business infrastructure, and of stronger links between companies and research and innovation.
Another large part of the funds (20.4% of the total) will strengthen human resources and the skills of the workforce in the affected areas (skilling-upskilling-reskilling) and promote employment.
The JTF support will also target energy transition, land use adaptation and the circular economy (energy upgrades, strengthening self-production through energy communities, renewable energy sources, e-mobility, and energy storage systems).
Two operations of strategic importance are also part of the Programme:
- the ‘Innovation Zone’ of Western Macedonia, an umbrella body for the development of infrastructure and actions for innovative entrepreneurship;
- the ‘Bioeconomy 360° Hub’ in the Municipalities of Megalopolis, Gortynia, Oichalia and Tripoli, aims at transforming business activity in the full range of the bioeconomy value chain (agri-food, circular and digital economy).
“The urgency of Europe’s clean energy transition has drastically increased following Russia’s aggressive war against Ukraine” Executive Vice-President for the European Green Deal, Frans Timmermans, said. “We need to turn the page on fossil fuels faster than previously expected and protect vulnerable groups from unaffordable energy bills by accelerating the rollout of renewables. In light of high energy prices, the risk of further increasing disparities is real. As the first Member State to finalize its just transition plan, Greece will now receive extra support to develop a green, inclusive and resilient economy with decent jobs for all. Good news for Greece, its regions, and all its citizens!”.