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EU budget and recovery fund: Is it a done deal? [What Think Tanks are thinking]

29-07-2020

After nearly five days of tough negotiations, the European Council agreed on the EU’s next seven-year budget, the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF), worth more than one trillion euros from 2021 to 2027, and crucially, on an additional 750-billion euro fund to help countries recover from the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Many politicians and analysts have hailed the agreement on the recovery fund in particular as an ‘historic moment’. For the first time, some EU debt will ...

After nearly five days of tough negotiations, the European Council agreed on the EU’s next seven-year budget, the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF), worth more than one trillion euros from 2021 to 2027, and crucially, on an additional 750-billion euro fund to help countries recover from the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Many politicians and analysts have hailed the agreement on the recovery fund in particular as an ‘historic moment’. For the first time, some EU debt will be mutualised and the EU will tap financial markets on a significant scale to secure funds, which will be disbursed in the form of grants and loans. The European Parliament - which must approve these spending plans - welcomed the fund but criticised the lack of parliamentary scrutiny in its implementation as well as some of the cuts leaders made in spending on innovation and the climate as compared to the European Commission’s MFF proposals and the Parliament’s own demands, and regretted the weakened link between budget spending and the rule of law. This note offers links to first reactions from international think tanks on the budget deal. Earlier publications on financing the EU can be found in a previous item in this series, published by EPRS on 8 June 2020.

Outcome of the Special European Council meeting of 17-21 July 2020

23-07-2020

After almost five days of negotiations, the European Council reached a political agreement on the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) for 2021 to 2027 and a specific recovery instrument following the coronavirus crisis – Next Generation EU (NGEU) – together totalling €1 824.3 billion. Negotiations seem to have concentrated in particular on the balance between loans and grants for the provision of funding under the NGEU, with a final division of €360 and €390 billion respectively. Other notable ...

After almost five days of negotiations, the European Council reached a political agreement on the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) for 2021 to 2027 and a specific recovery instrument following the coronavirus crisis – Next Generation EU (NGEU) – together totalling €1 824.3 billion. Negotiations seem to have concentrated in particular on the balance between loans and grants for the provision of funding under the NGEU, with a final division of €360 and €390 billion respectively. Other notable developments concern the link between EU funding and respect for the rule of law, the size of the MFF, rebates and own ressources.

Future financing of the Union: MFF, Own Resources and Next Generation EU

22-07-2020

On 21 July, EU Heads of State or Government reached a political agreement on the future design of EU finances. The next step involves negotiations between Parliament, whose consent is required for the adoption of the EU’s multiannual financial framework (MFF), and Council. In an extraordinary part-session two days later, Parliament is expected to vote on a motion for a resolution that confirms Parliament’s readiness to enter immediately into negotiations to improve the deal and sets out conditions ...

On 21 July, EU Heads of State or Government reached a political agreement on the future design of EU finances. The next step involves negotiations between Parliament, whose consent is required for the adoption of the EU’s multiannual financial framework (MFF), and Council. In an extraordinary part-session two days later, Parliament is expected to vote on a motion for a resolution that confirms Parliament’s readiness to enter immediately into negotiations to improve the deal and sets out conditions for its consent to the MFF.

Documenting climate mainstreaming in the EU budget - making the system more transparent, strigent and comprehensive

16-07-2020

This study examines the current methodologies used for tracking climate-related and biodiversity-related expenditure in the EU budget. It identifies strengths and weaknesses of the current methodologies, and examines proposed changes to the methodologies for the 2021-2027 financial perspective. On this basis, it identifies potential objectives for strengthening the tracking mechanisms, and puts forward suggested approaches to meeting those objectives.

This study examines the current methodologies used for tracking climate-related and biodiversity-related expenditure in the EU budget. It identifies strengths and weaknesses of the current methodologies, and examines proposed changes to the methodologies for the 2021-2027 financial perspective. On this basis, it identifies potential objectives for strengthening the tracking mechanisms, and puts forward suggested approaches to meeting those objectives.

Autor externo

Martin NESBIT Thorfinn STAINFORTH Kaley HART Evelyn UNDERWOOD Gustavo BECERRA Institute for European Environmental Policy

Negotiations on the next MFF and the EU recovery instrument: Key issues ahead of the July European Council

15-07-2020

The current multiannual financial framework (MFF), also known as the EU's long-term budget, comes to an end this year. While the European Commission put forward a proposal for the next MFF and its financing in May 2018, agreement has so far proved elusive under legislative procedures that give a veto power to each Member State. In recent months, the unfinished negotiations have become intertwined with the debate on the creation of a common EU tool to counter the severe socio-economic consequences ...

The current multiannual financial framework (MFF), also known as the EU's long-term budget, comes to an end this year. While the European Commission put forward a proposal for the next MFF and its financing in May 2018, agreement has so far proved elusive under legislative procedures that give a veto power to each Member State. In recent months, the unfinished negotiations have become intertwined with the debate on the creation of a common EU tool to counter the severe socio-economic consequences of the coronavirus pandemic. In May 2020, the Commission tabled revised proposals for a 2021-2027 MFF worth €1 100 billion and the EU own resources system, together with a proposal for a €750 billion recovery instrument, Next Generation EU (NGEU). The latter would be financed with funds borrowed on the capital markets to reinforce EU budgetary instruments in the 2021-2024 period. In addition, an amendment to the current MFF would provide a bridging solution to fund some recovery objectives this year already. The complex negotiations, which involve many different legislative procedures, are now entering a key phase. Issues expected to be under the spotlight include: the size of the MFF and of the NGEU and their interaction; reform of the financing system with the possible creation of new EU own resources; the breakdown of allocations (between policies and Member States); the contribution to the green transition; conditionalities (such as rules linking EU spending to the rule of law or to challenges identified in the European Semester); flexibility provisions to react to unforeseen events; the mix of grants and loans in the recovery instrument; and the repayment of funds borrowed under NGEU. European Council President Charles Michel has prepared a compromise package ahead of the July European Council meeting. If the Heads of State or Government find a political agreement, the next step will involve negotiations between Parliament and Council, since the former's consent is required in order for the MFF Regulation to be adopted. Parliament, which has been ready to negotiate on the basis of a detailed position since November 2018, is a strong advocate of a robust MFF and an ambitious recovery plan. It has stressed that it will not give its consent if the package does not include reform of the EU financing system, introducing new EU own resources.

Next Generation EU - Where are assigned revenue? Which impact in 2021?

15-07-2020

Exception to the budgetary principle of universality, assigned revenues flatten at 10.5 % in last years. In the emergency European Recovery Instrument, “Next Generation EU”, put forward by the Commission EUR 500 billion are external assigned revenue. In 2021, contributions from “Next Generation EU” are planned to provide an additional EUR 211.3 billion of assigned revenue. in 2021, assigned revenue will surge to EUR 220 000 million in commitments and EUR 46 100 million in payments, from a total ...

Exception to the budgetary principle of universality, assigned revenues flatten at 10.5 % in last years. In the emergency European Recovery Instrument, “Next Generation EU”, put forward by the Commission EUR 500 billion are external assigned revenue. In 2021, contributions from “Next Generation EU” are planned to provide an additional EUR 211.3 billion of assigned revenue. in 2021, assigned revenue will surge to EUR 220 000 million in commitments and EUR 46 100 million in payments, from a total amount of EUR 17 405.5 million in commitment appropriations and EUR 19 159.6 million in payments appropriations in 2019. On assigned revenue, the European Parliament is excluded from the decision-making process. Given the size of the amount in question, the budgetary treatment of external assigned revenue should be reassessed.

Outlook for the Special European Council meeting of 17-18 July 2020

14-07-2020

Based on an updated 'negotiating box' presented by the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, on 10 July, the special meeting of the European Council on 17-18 July will aim at finding a political agreement on the EU recovery fund, entitled ‘Next Generation EU’, and the multiannual financial framework (MFF) for the 2021-27 seven-year financing period. It will be the first meeting of EU Heads of State or Government to take place in person since the coronavirus outbreak. The last such physical ...

Based on an updated 'negotiating box' presented by the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, on 10 July, the special meeting of the European Council on 17-18 July will aim at finding a political agreement on the EU recovery fund, entitled ‘Next Generation EU’, and the multiannual financial framework (MFF) for the 2021-27 seven-year financing period. It will be the first meeting of EU Heads of State or Government to take place in person since the coronavirus outbreak. The last such physical meeting of the European Council – held on 20-21 February, prior to the crisis –failed to reach a political agreement on the EU's long-term budget. The revised negotiating box, taking into account the Commission's updated MFF proposals – adopted alongside, and linked to, its recovery fund proposals – envisages a reduced MFF amounting to €1.074 trillion. Furthermore, Charles Michel's proposals maintain the balance between loans and grants for the recovery fund proposed by the Commission. While a lot of pressure is being applied to find an agreement urgently, it remains to be seen whether EU leaders will agree a deal at this meeting or whether yet another meeting will be needed. In any case, the current MFF negotiations have already taken much longer than was originally intended, potentially jeopardising the timely launch of the EU's new spending programmes.

How EU funds tackle economic divide in the European Union

13-07-2020

When assessing the benefits Member States (MS) receive from the European Union (EU) budget, they primarily focus on their individual net positions, i.e. the net balance between their national contributions and the transfers received from the EU budget. This ‘juste retour’ thinking is associated with several limitations and problems and completely neglects the benefits accruing to MS beyond the pure financial streams related to the EU budget. MS may enjoy the indirect benefits that are related to ...

When assessing the benefits Member States (MS) receive from the European Union (EU) budget, they primarily focus on their individual net positions, i.e. the net balance between their national contributions and the transfers received from the EU budget. This ‘juste retour’ thinking is associated with several limitations and problems and completely neglects the benefits accruing to MS beyond the pure financial streams related to the EU budget. MS may enjoy the indirect benefits that are related to the various interventions and policies financed from the EU budget. Benefits may be also created for the EU as a whole in the case of policies coordinated and financed by the EU, replacing or complementing individual un-coordinated action at MS level and thus creating additional added value through making use of synergies. MS also benefit from intra-EU direct investments, intra-EU trade and the EU’s network effects. Therefore, the net position view could be complemented by additional indicators providing a more comprehensive picture of the overall benefits resulting for MS from the EU membership and budget and several reform options within the EU budget could help to overcome the net position view and support a debate focused less on national and more on the common interest of the EU altogether.

Autor externo

WIIW: Mr Robert Stehrer, Mr Roman Stöllinger, Mr Gabor Hunya, Ms Doris Hanzl-Weiss, Mr Mario Holzner, Mr Oliver Reiter WIFO: Ms Margit Schratzenstaller, Ms Julia Bachtrögler Blomeyer & Sanz: Ms Veronika Kubeková, Mr Roland Blomeyer

Amended proposal for the 2021-2027 MFF and 2021-2024 recovery instrument 'Next Generation EU' in figures

07-07-2020

This briefing provides a graphic presentation of the next long-term budget and recovery instrument (Next Generation EU) proposed by the European Commission on 27 May 2020 (COM 2020). By comparing it with the Commission's initial proposal of May 2018 (COM 2018) and the European Parliament's negotiating position, we highlight the changes for the future financing of EU priorities. The preparation of the EU's next Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) started formally in May 2018 with the proposal from ...

This briefing provides a graphic presentation of the next long-term budget and recovery instrument (Next Generation EU) proposed by the European Commission on 27 May 2020 (COM 2020). By comparing it with the Commission's initial proposal of May 2018 (COM 2018) and the European Parliament's negotiating position, we highlight the changes for the future financing of EU priorities. The preparation of the EU's next Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) started formally in May 2018 with the proposal from the European Commission, more than two years ago. The European Parliament adopted its detailed negotiating position on 14 November 2018. The European Council, however, held its first substantial debate on the proposals only on 20 February 2020, failing to find agreement. The coronavirus pandemic has complicated the situation further. Given the new circumstances, on 27 May 2020 the Commission put forward an amended proposal for the 2021-2027 MFF and, linked to it, a recovery instrument, entitled Next Generation EU (NGEU) for the years 2021-2024.

Amending Budget No 5/2020: Continuation of support to refugees in response to the Syria crisis

07-07-2020

Draft Amending Budget No 5/2020 (DAB 5/2020) accompanies the proposed decision of the European Parliament and of the Council to mobilise the Contingency Margin in order to continue support to refugees and host communities in response to the Syria crisis. Under the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) heading 4, 'Global Europe', €100 million in commitment and payment appropriations is proposed as resilience support to refugees and host communities in Jordan and Lebanon, whereas €485 million in commitment ...

Draft Amending Budget No 5/2020 (DAB 5/2020) accompanies the proposed decision of the European Parliament and of the Council to mobilise the Contingency Margin in order to continue support to refugees and host communities in response to the Syria crisis. Under the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) heading 4, 'Global Europe', €100 million in commitment and payment appropriations is proposed as resilience support to refugees and host communities in Jordan and Lebanon, whereas €485 million in commitment appropriations and €68 million in payment appropriations is proposed as urgent humanitarian support to refugees in Turkey under the Contingency Margin. The European Parliament is expected to vote on the Council position on DAB 5/2020 and the proposal to mobilise the Contingency Margin during its July plenary session.

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