MEP Mizzi stated her position in favour of added funding to transform poor peripheral areas into
areas of growth, prosperity, new opportunities and job creation. She further stated that it is
important to introduce more cooperation programmes that contribute to enlarging the
knowledge-based economy, along with the need to improve accessibility to stimulate investment
in SMEs and local economies. MEP Mizzi was speaking in the European Parliament during a debate
on the Cohesion policy in EU borders, in her capacity as S&D spokesperson on this opinion. She
emphasized the importance of funding programmes that cover education, culture and sports,
particularly for peripheral regions which might miss out on opportunities.

MEP Mizzi said that “the European integration process has helped internal border regions to
transform from poor peripheral areas into areas of growth, prosperity, new opportunities and job
creation. Cross-border regions have always faced more particular challenges than the rest of the
EU regions. Territorial cooperation between cross-border regions plays an important role in
overcoming different obstacles and mitigating the adverse effects of internal borders and in
providing Europeans with innovative solutions as regards research, education, training, culture
and integration" Mizzi quoted cross-border projects like INTERREG that have made a genuine
difference to border regions and have positively helped to improve their transformation.
Cooperation programmes have contributed to enlarging the knowledge-based economy and
improving accessibility across borders stimulating investment in SMEs and diversifying local
economies.

In her address MEP Mizzi argued that “by facilitating cross-border school visits and extracurricular
activated for children from a very young age, with the support of cross-borders cohesion projects,
we could unleash the potential of young children and further boost growth in the poorer European
region”.

"The funds are necessary for economic development and the furtherance of the less privileged
cross-border regions. Cohesion funds are vital for education and our youth. As such, the Union

needs to work in a spirit of cooperation in this field, to increase economic growth that will benefit
all and particularly interesting for Malta,” said MEP Mizzi.
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