Additionality is one of the principles driving the functioning of the Structural Funds. The principle of additionality means that EU Structural Funds may not replace the national or equivalent expenditure by a Member State.
The principle of additionality is verified at national level by the Commission, in cooperation with Member States, for the regions covered by the Convergence objective.
At the ex-ante stage, the Commission and the Member States decide the level of eligible public or equivalent spending to be maintained all over the programming period.
For each MemberState concerned the Commission will verify the compliance with the principle of additionality at the mid-term of the programming period, in 2011, and at the end of this period, in 2016.
The objective is to set realistic but sufficiently ambitious targets for structural public expenditure in order to ensure the additional trait of the Structural Funds intervention. As a general rule, the average annual level of expenditure in real terms shall be at least equal to the level attained in the previous programming period. For more information, consult the documents below.
This principle was applied to the allocation of money from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). It means that ERDF funding is additional to that provided by local and national authorities. The principle is designed to ensure that Member States contribute to the financing of infrastructural projects.
Article 15 of Regulation (EC) No 1083/2006
Europe's Hidden Billions - Tracking The EU's Structural Funds
Report on ex ante verification of additionality in the regions eligible under the Convergence objective for the period 2007–2013 (download)- Annex (download)- Citizens' Summary (download)