NUTS II and III classification for the Setúbal Peninsula

Pergunta à Comissão

The Setúbal peninsula, a NUTS (Nomenclature of Territorial Units for Statistics) II and III subdivision of the Lisbon Metropolitan Area, is accordingly subject to the European structural and investment funding levels and criteria applicable to such categories. This has been the subject of keen debate, with consensus emerging in political and business circles and in civil society regarding the need to review this system of classification for statistical purposes and applying NUTS II and III referencing to the Setúbal peninsula.

The inclusion of this area as a NUTS II and III subdivision of the Lisbon Metropolitan Area is very much to the disadvantage of local business interests, since it effectively reduces the level of co-funding available for their projects. In other words, projects to generate wealth and create jobs on the Setúbal peninsula are being hampered by sheer bureaucracy. According to studies(1) this is costing it around EUR 2 billion in each multiannual financial framework.

In view of the ambivalent position being adopted by the Portuguese Government in this regard:

1. Can the Commission say whether it is aware of any plans by Portuguese Government to recommend changes to the NUTS?

2. Is it in favour of the suggested review?

3. When could any changes be feasibly brought about?