The aim of the cohesion policy is to accelerate the socio-economic development of Member States and their regions. Poland as well as its closest neighbour, the Czech Republic, have benefi ted from structural funds and the Cohesion Fund. The effects of provided aid have already become apparent but they differ given the scale of problems, including regional issues existing in these countries, and the amount of funds allocated. The aim of the article is to present the directions and the effects of the implementation of the cohesion policy in Poland and the Czech Republic with particular focus on the financial perspective of 2007–2013. The results of the evaluation of programmes for the years 2007–2013 show that EU funds are mostly spent on transport infrastructure. However, the support of entrepreneurship and innovation and human capital should be an important objective in the current programming perspective in order to transform and modernise the structure of economies.