The Canary Islands, Azores and Madeira all face economic issues due to remoteness to the rest of the EU. Their unemployment rates are all higher than the EU average. The Canaries have a GDP per capita which is less than 80% of the EU average.
They classify as highest priority for assistance from the European Development Fund, which is intended to close the gap between the richest and poorest areas of the EU.
Between 2000 and 2006 the islands received 145 million euros in economic assistance. About 1/3 of this went to improving infrastructure such as the water supply and waste supply.