"The Commission will authorise further disbursements based on the implementation of the investments and reforms included in Latvia's recovery and resilience plan. The country is set to receive €1.8 billion in total, fully consisting of grants, over the lifetime of its plan," the EC said in a statement.
"Today's disbursement follows the recent successful implementation of the first borrowing operations under NextGenerationEU. By the end of the year, the Commission intends to raise up to a total of €80 billion in long-term funding, to be complemented by short-term EU-Bills, to fund the first disbursement to Member States under the RRF and other NextGenerationEU.
"Part of NextGenerationEU, the RRF will provide €723.8 billion (in current prices) to support investments and reforms across Member States. The Latvian plan is part of the unprecedented EU response to emerge stronger from the COVID-19 crisis, foster the green and digital transitions and strengthen the cohesion in our societies," said the statement.
#NextGenerationEU: @EU_Commission disburses €237 million in pre-financing to 🇱🇻 Latvia.— EU Economy & Finance (@ecfin) September 10, 2021
The pre-financing payment will help to kick-start the implementation of the crucial investments and reforms outlined in Latvia’s recovery and resilience plan.
📌 https://t.co/SCMnGrHLqK pic.twitter.com/SdjUmZmQz3
The Latvian plan includes a €295 million investment project to overhaul the Riga Metropolitan area transport system, €125 million will support businesses introducing digital technologies, and Latvia's plan will also devote €95 million on digital upskilling to improve basic and advanced digital skills.
In addition the plan includes €158 million on reforms and investments to modernise healthcare, strengthen the resilience of the health sector and increase the availability of integrated and high-quality healthcare services. It provides for investments in infrastructure and medical equipment in three university hospitals in Riga, seven regional hospitals and 40 ambulatory care institutions.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said: “I am delighted to see Latvia receive its first disbursement of €237 million under NextGenerationEU. It represents an important step in delivering the ambitious programme of investments and reforms set out in Latvia's recovery and resilience plan. I am proud that NextGenerationEU will help Latvia achieve its green and digital transition with measures to support sustainable transport, digital training and improving the resilience of its health system. We will continue to stand with Latvia to ensure the plan is a success.”
Valdis Dombrovskis, former Latvian Prime Minister and now EC Executive Vice-President said:
“Today's first €237 million disbursement is a significant step on Latvia's path to emerge stronger from the crisis. Since Latvia was quick to submit its recovery and resilience plan, it is now one of the first EU Member States to receive payments from the Recovery and Resilience Facility ... We will work closely with Latvia's authorities and social partners to implement the reforms and investments identified in the plan. I wish Latvia every success in putting them into effect.”