The Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) sets the annual limits on EU commitments in different policy areas and on the overall annual payments for usually a period of seven.
The MFF is adopted thorough a special legislative procedure, with the Council acting unanimously after receiving Parliament’s consent as expressed by the absolute majority. Alternatively, the European Council may unanimously authorize the Council to act by a qualified majority when adopting the MFF regulation.
THE LEGISLATIVE PROCEDURE:
- On 2 May 2018, the Commission published its legislative package comprising proposals for a 2021-2027 long-term budget. The initial Commission’s proposal amounted to €1 134 583 million.
- The negotiations in the Council and the European Council were dragging on. In December 2019 there was still no agreement.
- The outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic further complicated the negotiations. In April 2020, the European Council asked the Commission to come up with a proposal for a recovery fund linked to the new MFF.
- In May 2020, the Commission presented the recovery and resilience package including the amended proposal for the MFF, a decision on the system of Own Resources, and the proposal for a regulation establishing an EU recovery instrument (Next Generation EU) to support the recovery in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- In July 2020, an agreement was reached in the European Council on the recovery instrument and the MFF. In reaction to this, the European Parliament voted a resolution not accepting the political agreement on the MFF.
- The negotiations between the Parliament, the Presidency of the Council, and the Commission started in August 2020. After 10 weeks, the Parliament and the Council reached a political agreement covering the budgetary package: the 2021-2027 MFF, the Own Resources, the Next Generation EU, and the Rule of Law budget conditionality.
On 17 December 2020, the 2021-2027 package was adopted by the Council. For the first time, with the conditionality mechanism, disbursement of EU funds will be tied to respect for Rule of Law standards.
WHAT DOES THE UPCOMING MFF LOOK LIKE?
The new MFF provides for a budget of €1 074.3 billion for the EU27 in 2018 prices. Together with the Next Generation EU recovery instrument of €750 billion, it will allow the EU to provide an unprecedented €1.8 trillion of funding over the coming years to support recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and the EU’s long-term priorities across different policy areas.
The funds allocated for the different areas are:
- The single market, innovation, and digital,the EU will be spending €132.8 billion.
- Cohesion, resilience and values, the EU will be spending €377.8 billion.
- Natural resources and environmentthe spending will be €356.4 billion (€373.9 billion with the contribution from the Next Generation EU).
- Migration and border managementthe spending will amount to €22.7 billion.
- Security and defensewill be spent €13.2 billion.
- EU neighbourhood and the worldthe spending will amount to €98.4 billion.
- European public administration, the EU will be spending 73.10 billion.
For more information, please visit the Commission’s website.
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