JASPERS celebrated its tenth anniversary on 9th November in Brussels, in the presence of the early contributors to the initiative, JASPERS staff coming from Luxembourg and all regional offices and representatives of its stakeholders (EU Commission, EIB, EBRD and beneficiary Member States).
“In its first ten years of existence, JASPERS has assisted over 1 000 projects. The investment value of those approved by the European Commission for grant financing is close to EUR 80 billion”, said EIB President Werner Hoyer at the opening ceremony. “JASPERS has shown it can play a vital role by speeding up delivery of investment in projects that promote growth and jobs”.
“JASPERS has grown considerably in size, scope and remit. It is now well placed to deliver the boost required in Europe and also to change the focus towards new areas, like developing the knowledge economy, while also responding to major global challenges like climate change”, said Walter Deffaa, Director General of DG Regional and Urban Policy.
Representatives from four beneficiary countries (Croatia, Hungary, Poland and Romania) underlined JASPERS’ role in “filling the gap” between old and new Member States, while contributing to speed up the absorption of the available EU grant funds (“EC approval? No JASPERS, no project”, said Noémi Dalnoky from the Hungarian Ministry of National Development).
“JASPERS has had a huge impact on delivering better EU projects”, concluded EIB Vice President Jan Vapaavuori, “Taking stock on the vast expertise and experience gained and constantly developed, in the future JASPERS will consider a holistic approach, reaching out to all through its competence centre, putting more effort into developing the new strands of business and sectors and in advisory tailor-made support”.