Natural resources and environment: Heading 3 of the 2021-2027 MFF

Briefing 14-04-2021

Dedicated to programmes and funds supporting agriculture and maritime policy, and environment and climate change, Heading 3 is the second biggest in terms of funding in the new multiannual financial framework (MFF) for 2021 2027. The two agricultural funds – the European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF) and the Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) – continue to absorb the greater part of the financial resources under this heading. However, the European Commission had proposed an amount of €324 284 million (2018 prices) to cover both funds, which is a decrease of around €60 000 million (or 15 %) compared to the previous MFF (2014 2020) after deducting United Kingdom (UK) spending. In its November 2018 resolution on the European Commission proposal for the new MFF, the European Parliament raised the budget for agricultural and maritime policy back to the level of the 2014 2020 MFF, to €391 198 million (2018 prices). Parliament also asked for a new Energy Transition Fund, with a budget of €4 800 million (2018 prices) for 2021 2027, to address the negative socio-economic impact on workers and communities affected by the transition from a coal and carbon dependent economy to a low-carbon economy. According to the final agreement reached between the Council and the European Parliament on 10 November 2020, the commitment appropriations for natural resources and environment will total €356 374 million under the 2021 2027 MFF, plus €17 500 million under the recovery instrument Next Generation EU (NGEU), which represents a total amount of €373.874 million for 2021 to 2027 (2018 prices). This means the cuts in the overall budget for Heading 3 (plus NGEU) represent a reduction of 6.4 % in spending, compared to the 2014 2020 MFF. The share of Heading 3 within the overall 2021 2027 MFF will be 32.2 % or 20.5 % of the 2021 2027 MFF, plus NGEU. This is an update of a briefing from January 2020.