Following a Thursday meeting with visiting EU Commissioner for Regional Policy Johannes Hahn, Kubilius told journalists that Lithuania is concerned about such a proposal, and solutions would be looked for by means of negotiations.
"We don’t want to see such a drop in the calculation of the 2014-2020 structural support for Lithuania the one we see in the presented form and presented proposal. The drop for us amounts to 14 percent, i.e., we loose over one billion litas. Latvia and Estonia are facing similar perspectives," Kubilius said.
"Structural and regional support funds are very important for Lithuania. We still use them very successfully and effectively, and we are very concerned that, based on the existing proposals, the three Baltic states might receive substantially lower structural funding in the next financial perspective. I believe proper solutions will be looked for by means of negotiations," the Lithuanian premier said.
The EU commissioner told journalists the size of structural support is calculated based on the size of a country's gross domestic product over the last three years.
"The most relevant figure for calculating the allocation to a country is always the GDP and here we take the average of the last three available years which means for regions 2008 to 2010 and countries 2009 to 2011. And here we take the average of these three years as a baseline for the calculation," Hahn said.
Linking the size of EU support to the GDP would lead to capping of funding for Lithuania to 2.5 percent of the country's GDP.
The Lithuanian government said earlier the principle did not match the goal of the EU cohesion policy aimed at closing the development gap among regions. Besides, Lithuania's example in absorbing funds of the EU's existing financial program, according to the Lithuanian government, shows that the 2.5 percent-GDP capping cannot be linked to capabilities to absorb large-scale EU structural support, and changes would mostly affect those regions where GDPs dropped the most due to the economic crisis.
Lithuania was allocated EUR 6.8 billion in EU structural support in 2007-2013.
The three Baltic states and Hungary have called on the European Commission to review its proposal.