The Multi-Annual Financial Framework (MFF) determines the budget spending of the EU for a period of at least five years. The current MFF which ran from 2014 to 2020, is coming to an end. The EU institutions and Member States are elaborating the new MFF for the period of seven years, from 2021 to 2027.
The procedure of establishing the MFF starts with:
1. A proposal by the European Commission is put on the table, that sets out the regulation laying down the MFF (the headings, instruments, structure, legal basis)
2. This proposal must be adopted by the Council of Ministers by unanimity, after obtaining the consent of the European Parliament.
Our confederation focuses on the External Instruments as these are the instruments which fund development cooperation. They represent about 6 % of the total EU budget under the umbrella “Global Europe”.
Have a look at the reverse chronological timeline below
to know more about the process and the next steps
Formally, the MFF is approved by a unanimous decision of the Council of Ministers and the Parliament has to give its consent.
The new budget will enter into force in January 2021 for a period of 7 years, until 2027.
Legal Basis of the external instruments
While the Commission will release the legislative sectoral proposals on the 29th of May, the Commission will publish a more detailed functioning of the External Instruments on June 14th.
From then, the decisions on the EU budget are taken by the Council and the negotiations take place at Member States’s level. The Commission is no longer involved.
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Foreign Affairs Council (Development)
The Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Heads of State and Governments will gather in Brussels to discuss the external financing of the next EU budget.
CONCORD encourages its members to share the reactions below during meetings with ministries and other stakeholders at national level as well as to send this position proactively ahead of the 22nd of May.
CONCORD meets the DEVE Committee
CONCORD Europe was invited to speak during the DEVE Committee meeting on 16 May, 2018 under the agenda point “Multi-annual Financial Framework (MFF) for 2021-2027: what does it mean for development cooperation?“. Katerzyna Lemanska (Coordination SUD / GHA) was representing our confederation, in the presence of the DEVE committee and the European Commission.
EU Commission’s communication
The European Commission launched its communication on the future EU budget, this communication gave a first overview of the main budget architecture and the resources allocated by EU Member States. Below find CONCORD’s reaction on the proposal.
Workshop DEVE Committee – CONCORD
This workshop organised by the Committee of Development with CONCORD Europe focused on the MFF 2021-2017 and the Future of ACP-EU Relations. CONCORD’s reaction was discussed.
Merge of external instruments
The European Commission launched its official communication on the 2nd of May, including a merge of 12 different External Instruments.
While this proposal has a series of advantages, CONCORD is concerned that this proposal will not allow the EU to live up to its commitments on poverty eradication and sustainable development. See our general reaction from April 2018.
A Ministerial Conference took place in March 2018 during which Heads of States and Governments discussed the strategic direction of the future EU budget.
Ahead of the Conference, CONCORD, together with other platforms, EPLO, HRDN and VOICE, wrote a letter addressed to Heads of States and Governments asking for the future EU budget to include Human Rights and Sustainable Development at the core of their concerns.
Once the spending review was over, the drafting of the proposal by the European Commission started in January 2018 and will close on the 2nd of May.
The draft of the proposal started with a public consultation which opened on January 10th and closed on March 8th.
Back in 2017, CONCORD responded to the public consultation of the mid-term review on the External Financing Instruments. Find below the summary of CONCORD’s contribution.
European Parliament preparing the MFF
The European Parliament launched a report titled “Next MFF: Preparing the Parliament’s position on MFF post-2020”. All the Committees in the Parliament are invited to provide an opinion.
The DEVE Committee (Committee in charge of development matters) prepared some amendments to the text. So did the BUDG Committee (in charge of the Budget).
CONCORD reacted to the amendments made by DEVE and BUDG.
First steps of the EU Budget
The process of the next EU Budget started officially in June 2017 with a reflection paper from the Commission. In October, the Budget Committee of the Parliament adopted a resolution based on the EC reflection paper.
When it comes to the external instruments (the instruments which finance development aid), the Committee in charge of Development in the European Parliament (DEVE) worked all along from October 2017 to January 2018 to agree on a joint opinion which was then sent to the Budget Committee and the CODEV group in the Council.
As the Spending Review was finalised and presented to the public, CONCORD launched its first position paper in December 2017 providing guidance on the general direction of the future EU Budget.