NextGenerationEU: Positive preliminary assessment of Austria's first request for €700 million disbursement under the Recovery and Resilience Facility

The European Commission has today endorsed a positive preliminary assessment of Austria's first payment request for €700 million of grants (net of pre-financing) under the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF), the key instrument at the heart of NextGenerationEU.

On 22 December 2022, Austria submitted to the Commission a payment request based on the achievement of the 44 milestones and targets selected in the Council Implementing Decision for the first instalment. They cover transformative reforms such as a Renewable Expansion Law, which will accelerate the roll-out of renewable energy production, as well as a “Climate-Ticket” reform making public transport more attractive.

Several targets also concern major investments. This includes investment in energy efficiency supporting Austrian families in replacing old gas and oil boilers in their houses with renewable heating systems, as well as in delivering digital devices to pupils in schools.

With their request, the Austrian authorities provided detailed and comprehensive evidence demonstrating the fulfilment of the 44 milestones and targets. The Commission has thoroughly assessed this information before presenting its positive preliminary assessment of the payment request.

The Austrian recovery and resilience plan includes a wide range of investment and reform measures in four thematic components. The plan will be supported by €3.75 billion in grants, of which €450 million was disbursed to Austria as pre-financing on 28 September 2021.

Payments under the RRF are performance-based and contingent on Member States implementing the investments and reforms outlined in their respective recovery and resilience plans.

President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, said: “I have good news for Austria today: the country is ready to receive a first grant payment of €700 million under Europe's recovery plan, once EU countries approve our assessment. Austria has kicked off significant reforms and investments supporting the green transition. The ‘KlimaTicket', for instance, is exemplary. Continued investments are helping families switch to renewable heating systems. Austria is also investing to digitalise schools, thereby offering a better learning experience to pupils. Congratulations Austria!” 

Next steps

The Commission has now sent its positive preliminary assessment of Austria's fulfilment of the milestones and targets required for this payment to the Economic and Financial Committee (EFC), asking for its opinion. The EFC's opinion, to be delivered within a maximum of four weeks, should be taken into account in the Commission's assessment. Following the EFC's opinion, the Commission will adopt the final decision on the disbursement of the financial contribution, in accordance with the examination procedure, through a comitology committee. Following the adoption of the decision by the Commission, the disbursement to Austria can take place.

The Commission will assess further payment requests by Austria based on the fulfilment of the milestones and targets outlined in the Council Implementing Decision, reflecting progress on the implementation of the investments and reforms.

The amounts disbursed to the Member States are published in the Recovery and Resilience Scoreboard, which shows progress of the implementation of the national recovery and resilience plans.

For More Information

Statement by President von der Leyen

Preliminary assessment

Questions and Answers on the positive preliminary assessment of Austria's request for €700 million disbursement

Press release on €450 million in pre-financing to Austria

Question and Answers on Austria's recovery and resilience plan

Factsheet on Austria's recovery and resilience plan

Proposal for a Council Implementing Decision

Staff-working document

Recovery and Resilience Facility

Recovery and Resilience Scoreboard

Recovery and Resilience Facility Regulation

Question and Answers on the Recovery and Resilience Facility

EU as a borrower website