EU budget framework 2014-2020: Council agrees to put greater focus on new priorities
7 March 2017, the Council agreed to adjust the EU's multi-annual
financial framework (MFF) for 2014-2020 to bring it in line with new
priorities. The agreed changes reinforce the EU's support for tackling
the migration crisis, strengthening security, boosting growth and
creating jobs. They will allow the EU to respond more easily to
unexpected needs without changing the MFF expenditure ceilings. And they
will help to avoid an excessive backlog of unpaid bills.
first-ever revision of the multi-annual budgetary framework will ensure
that the EU budget is even more effective in tackling current
challenges and responding to unexpected needs. It also avoids undue
pressure on member states' national budgets at a time of continuing
efforts to consolidate public finances. The Maltese presidency, building
on the work of the Slovak presidency, has worked very hard to unblock
the deadlock of last year and we are very satisfied that an agreement
could be reached today”.
Louis Grech, Deputy Prime Minister of Malta and President of the Council
More money for main priorities
The revised MFF will provide a reinforcement of €6.01 billion for the main priorities over
the years 2017 to 2020. €2.55 billion will be available to address
migration, reinforce security and strengthen external border control.
€1.39 billion will stand ready for tackling the root causes of
migration, and €2.08 billion will help stimulate growth and create jobs
through a number of highly effective programmes such as the youth
employment initiative (+€1.2 billion), Horizon 2020 (+€200 million), and
Erasmus+ (+€100 million).
More flexibility to meet unforeseen needs
The revised MFF also improves the EU's capacity to respond more quickly to unexpected needs.
To this end, the amounts for the emergency aid reserve and the
flexibility instrument will be increased (by an average of €23 million
and €145 million per year respectively) for the years 2017 -2020. It
will also become possible to transfer unused amounts from one special
instrument to another: amounts equivalent to the resources remaining
unused under the European globalisation adjustment fund and the EU's
solidarity fund will be made available under the flexibility instrument.
Avoiding a backlog of unpaid bills
To counter the risk of an excessive backlog of unpaid bills the scope for recycling unused payments from one year to the following years is increased. The Council also undertook to take any steps needed to avoid the excessive accumulation of unpaid bills.
MFF regulation sets out annual maximum amounts which the EU is allowed
to spend on different policy areas over the period from 2014 to 2020. It
translates political priorities into figures, ensures budgetary
discipline for the EU and facilitates the adoption of the annual EU
revised MFF regulation still needs the consent of the European
Parliament before it can be adopted by unanimity by the Council.