Global Gateway, launched by President von der Leyen in December 2021, is the EU’s contribution to narrowing the global investment gap, supporting global economic recovery and accompanying the twin green and digital transitions beyond European borders. It is a value-based strategy to boost smart, clean and secure links in digital, energy and transport sectors, and to strengthen health, education and research systems across the world.
In this regional event, the speakers presented the role of the Economic and Investments Plans (EIPs) for the Western Balkans, the Eastern and Southern Neighbourhood as main drivers of the Global Gateway and stressed the necessity for countries to invest and develop infrastructures they need to create sustainable prosperity, jobs and services. A focus was made on the Economic and Investment Plans.
Through the implementation of the EIPs, the European Union supports crucial infrastructure investments needed to foster connections, trade and growth. This requires innovative financing modalities to mobilise the private sector through public financing, leading to economic growth, and boosting the twin green and digital transitions.
The panellists discussed some of the specific priorities for EU neighbourhoods, such as fostering good governance and business environments, digital connectivity and environmental protection. They also highlighted the importance of small and medium-sized businesses to national economies and spoke about how to foster investment in these companies, both through encouraging private investment and through public guarantees and loans. The critical role of young people in communicating the benefits of partnering with the EU was also emphasised, as was the need to move from policymaking to delivering results.