Portugal unlikely to get 2nd tranche of RRP this year

 In News, Portugal RRP

Portugal delivered its request for the payment of the second tranche of its Recovery and Resilience Plan (RRP) on September 30.

But it is unlikely that the €1.8Bn will arrive this year. “There’s still a chance of that, but I would say it’s low”, says Fernando Alfaiate, President of the Recover Portugal Mission that manages the European Commission ‘bazooka’.
“The request for payment of the second tranche was submitted at the end of the third quarter. The European Commission is now making its evaluation and we await the results of this evaluation. Contacts have already been made about this matter for discussion with some points on the table and there are always additional questions with the submission of the documents that need to be presented”, explained the RRP manager at the Deloitte Tax Summit that took place in Porto on Monday.
Portugal has requested the payout of €1.7Bn in grants and €109 million in loans after meeting “20 targets and markers that cover reforms and investments in the domains of health and social policies, ecology transition and climate change adaptations such as bio-economy, sustainable transport and forest management”, according to a EC communiqué on September 30.
“It also contains digital transition support measures in the public and private sectors, including the development, training and improvement of skills” adds the same communiqué.
These €1.8Bn will be added to the €3,3Bn that Portugal has already received from the bazooka, with €2.2Bn in the form of advance payments.
But despite Portugal being among the countries that have already requested the release of the second tranche, there has been a chorus of criticisms that Portugal has delayed actually executing the RRP and applying the funds to applicants and that only 7% of the first tranche being paid out to national companies and consortia.
Fernando Alfaiate rejects any delays and stresses the target of paying out 8.5% of the RRP to the beneficiaries by the end of the year.
“We have an obligation to ensure that the investment funds that are foreseen in the RRP are applied well”.