Addressing COVID-19: Council approves €6.2 billion budget increase for 2020

Today, the Council agreed to add €6.2 billion to the EU 2020 budget to address the impact of the COVID-19-crisis and to fund inter alia the vaccine strategy. The Council adopted draft amending budget No 8 for 2020 by written procedure.

The revised budget increases payments for the Emergency Support Instrument (ESI) by €1.09 billion to ensure the development and deployment of a COVID-19 vaccine. The European Commission will use this money as a down-payment for pre-ordering vaccine doses.

Draft amending budget No 8 also increases payments by €5.1 billion for the Corona Response Investment Initiative (CRII) and the Corona Response Investment Initiative Plus (CRII+). The money will be used to cover the additional needs for cohesion funding forecast until the end of the year. The CRII redirects unspent money from the EU budget to tackling the COVID-19 crisis, whilst the CRII+ relaxes the cohesion spending rules to increase flexibility.

During its plenary on 14-17 September 2020, the European Parliament is expected to agree on its position on the draft amending budget proposal. Once there is an agreement, the draft amending budget will enter into force.