COLLEGE MEETING: EU budget 2021-2027: Time to decide

Ahead of the European Council meeting on 17 and 18 October, the European Commission calls on EU Heads of State or Government to provide political guidance and new impetus to the negotiations in order to reach an agreement on a fair, balanced and modern long-term EU budget for the period 2021-2027 before the end of this year. The next multiannual financial framework (MFF) should be fit for the challenges of today and tomorrow so it can enable the EU delivering on the expectations of citizens. In a Communication published today, the European Commission outlines the main points that need consideration and a clear steer by EU Leaders in order to reach a swift agreement. On that occasion, President Jean-Claude Juncker said: “The long-term EU budget is about acting where the EU adds the most value. It is investment in Europe-wide, world-leading research. It is funding for cross-border infrastructure, support for small businesses, and a safety net for our farmers. It is an education in another European country for generations of young Europeans. These are the priorities reflected in the Commission’s proposal for the next seven years. Moreover, our proposal is a forward-looking, responsible and pragmatic plan on how to do more with less. I call on the European Parliament and our Member States to reach a swift agreement.” Commissioner in charge of Budget and Human Resources, Günther H. Oettinger said: “In the spring of last year, the Commission made a proposal about EU’s next long-term budget that everyone recognised as a solid basis for negotiations. 16 months later, work has progressed but time is becoming short. Everyone must now work towards a compromise. We should roll up our sleeves and walk the final stretch. At a time of great challenges, Europe cannot afford a delay of its long-term budget. Our citizens are waiting to see results; it is now time to take responsibility. It is time to decide.” In line with the conclusions from the European Council meeting of 20 and 21 June 2019, an agreement on EU’s next long-term budget should be reached before the end of the year. The Commission shares the firm believe that sticking to this timeline is essential, for the hundreds of thousands of students, farmers and researchers across Europe, as well as everybody else who benefits from the EU budget.