The EU institutions provide expertise and technical assistance to the member states’ governance bodies in the design and implementation of most vital socio-economic reforms. Recent Eurobarometer survey conducted during April 2023 confirms the importance of such assistance and recognizes the need for extensive support through the European Commission’s Technical Support Instrument.
Through the TSI, the Commission provides technical support to reforms in the EU member states, although only upon request by national authorities. Thus, the TSI can assist the member states governance bodies to design, amend, implement and revise the transformative reforms included in the national Recovery and Resilience Plans (RRPs).
The Eurobarometer’s survey
In March 2023, the Commission approved a new round of 151 projects under the technical support projects (TSI), to support all EU states in preparing, designing and implementing up to 326 cutting-edge reforms in 2023.
Then, the flash Eurobarometer survey was conducted in the first half of April 2023 through phone interviews: over 25, 5 thousand respondents from the 27 EU states took part.
The national projects support-applications (through the TSI mechanism) respond to the needs in reforms’ implementation expressed by the member states that are aligned with the EU’s priorities for modern and efficient public administrations, sustainable growth strategies and resilient economies. Many reform projects are also linked to the REPowerEU Plan and their implementation through the REPowerEU program in the national recovery and resilience plans, RRP.
The Technical Support Instrument, TSI is the European Commission’s key tool for supporting the member states’ governance in designing and implementing growth-enhancing and inclusive reforms. From healthcare, to sound public finances, from the digitalisation of education and public services, to strengthening the business environment and the financial sector, the TSI supports the states with their reform agenda.
The TSI is part of the Multiannual Financial Framework 2021-2027 and builds on the success of its predecessor, the Structural Reform Support Programme (SRSP). Since 2017, more than 1,500 technical support projects have been implemented in all Member States with support of the TSI and the SRSP.
The outcome of this Eurobarometer survey confirms the importance of the TSI; the EU’s support mechanism responds to the EU member states’ requests for assistance in the nationally identified reform needs.
Through the TSI, the EU provides expertise and technical support, enables and fosters exchanges of information among countries, and develops capacity in public administrations.
So far, more than 400 TSI projects – including several new projects for 2023 – have been or will be contributing to the preparation or implementation of Member States’ RRPs, including reforms to promote the capacity-building of public administrations.
More in TSI in: https://reform-support.ec.europa.eu/index_en
According to latest survey, the following main outcomes are apparent; here are some of the highlights from the survey:
= 42% of Europeans think that the EU could foster the exchange of good practices among the member states;
= over 40% confirm the importance of EU support to the states in managing crises, such as pandemics, natural disaster or conflicts;
= 34% consider that the EU could provide knowledge and expertise to the member states in designing and implementing reforms;
= 34% say that the EU could provide financial support to the member states in implementing needed reforms;
= 31% believe that the EU could help to improve skills and competencies in the member states’ public administration.
On efficient public administration
According to the survey, public administrations in the Member States could be more effective and efficient. For example, more than 45% of citizens think that the public administration in their country is complex, burdensome and slow.
To increase confidence in their country’s public administration, Europeans think that it should be less bureaucratic (52%) and more transparent (44%) about decisions and the use of public funds. About a third of respondents think that more communication and streamlined interaction with citizens, and better skilled civil servants, would help improve trust in the public administration.
Almost half of Europeans believe that public administration should be closer to the people using different direct channels of communication, including in-person interactions, as well as provide clearer information about procedures and services.
Over 30 percent of Europeans asked the Commission for more digital services in their countries development, as well as for more user-friendly e-government services (35%).
More information in the following Commission’s websites: = Eurobarometer report; = Reform Support Website; = Technical Support Instrument; = Country factsheets on Member States’ reform projects; and = TSI Annual Work Programe 2023.