Landmark deal on new EU Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument 

Press Releases 
  • 70.8 billion (2018 prices) EUR over next seven years for development, neighbourhood and international cooperation 
  • Increased focus on rule of law, democracy, human rights support 
  • Strengthened strategic steer and scrutiny by Parliament 

On Tuesday, Parliament and the Council reached a political agreement on the EU Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument for 2021-2027, worth 70.8 billion EUR.

The new instrument will support sustainable development in EU neighbourhood countries, Africa, Asia, the Americas, the Pacific and the Caribbean. It will also reinforce key thematic aspects of the EU’s external policy, such as human rights, democracy, civil society, and contribute to addressing global challenges, including climate change, migration, peace and stability, as well as cooperation with strategic partners. The instrument will help countries most in need to overcome the long-term developmental challenges by merging several current EU instruments under one global roof. The EU will also boost its innovative financing under the European Fund for Sustainable Development Plus, by leveraging private capital to complement direct development assistance.

Ambitious development objectives and stronger parliamentary involvement in strategic decisions

Today’s political agreement was reached after bridging the outstanding differences among the co-legislators on crucial matters related to the budget and governance of the instrument. A balanced agreement on the provisions related to migration and forced displacement was also settled. As part of the negotiations, Parliament ensured its increased involvement in the work on defining the main strategic orientations and in the scrutiny of decisions made under this instrument.


After the agreement, David McAllister (EPP, Germany), Chair of Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee, said: "I am very pleased that Parliament's negotiators have today struck a political agreement on the new Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument. Our main objective was always to make sure that the EU’s external relations will be backed up with sufficient financial resources. The new instrument will be an indispensable tool for the EU to be able to live up to its commitments in the world and vis-à-vis our partner countries. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Parliament's negotiators for their tireless efforts during the past 14 months in securing this agreement.”

Tomas Tobé (EPP, Sweden), Chair of Parliament's Development Committee, said: "Today's political agreement on the future instrument marks a step change for the Union's development cooperation and international partnerships. After long months of negotiations, Parliament and Council have reached a political understanding that lays the foundations for a modernised global financing instrument under the Union budget, covering virtually all regions in the world. This will allow us to effectively address the main global challenges we are facing in this crucial decade for the achievement of the 2030 Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals."

Next steps

A final trilogue to put the political agreement into a concrete text will take place before the new instrument can be formally adopted by Parliament and the Council.


The objective of this instrument is to provide financial assistance to support the European Union’s values, principles and fundamental interests worldwide. It aims to eradicate poverty, support democracy, rule of law and respect for human rights, sustainable development and the fight against climate change.

It will contribute to the promotion of multilateralism, the achievement of the international commitments and objectives that the Union has agreed to, in particular the Sustainable Development Goals, the 2030 Agenda and the Paris Agreement.

This regulation shall promote stronger partnerships with third countries, including in Africa, the European neighbourhood, Asia, Latin America, the Pacific and the Caribbean and other partners.

It will merge most existing EU instruments (except the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance - IPA III) with a total financial envelope of 70 800 million EUR (2018 prices), of which:

i. Geographic programmes: EUR 53 805 million, of which at least EUR 17 217 million for the neighbourhood, while maintaining an adequate geographical balance, and at least EUR 26 000 million for Sub-Saharan Africa;

ii. EUR 5 665 million for thematic programmes;

iii. EUR 2 835 million for rapid response actions;

iv. EUR 8 495 million for the emerging challenges and priorities cushion to address unforeseen circumstances, new needs or emerging challenges, like crisis and post-crisis situations or migratory pressure, or promote new Union-led or international initiatives or priorities.

The EP negotiating team is led by the four co-rapporteurs: