Monday 1 March 2021
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Brussels requires more EU money for the coming years and wants a higher contribution

European (Finance) Commissioner Günther Oettinger has asked the heads of state and government of the EU countries for a higher contribution to the EU multi-year budget. He believes that the EU countries should no longer allocate a maximum of 1 percent of their (joint) gross national product for EU cases, but should increase that to 1.11 percent.

The EU heads of government must clarify next week at a summit in Brussels about the European multi-annual budget (MFF) for the period 2021-2027. Budget Commissioner Günther Oettinger is increasing the pressure. The German pointed out that the Member States want more money for, among other things, climate, Africa, defense, research, the Erasmus program, migration, digital policy and protection of the external borders. If the budget doesn't grow, it can't be, he said. "Procrastination is simply unacceptable."

The procedural problem is that the current committee will resign at the end of this month, that the new Von Leyen Commission will take office on 1 November, that the new European Parliament will demand a new, more active policy (which will also cost it), and that the Heads of State summit on 17 and 18 October - so - not yet able to pronounce a final judgment.

Last year, Brussels proposed a budget of nearly € 1300 billion, about 300 billion more than in the 2014-2020 budget, despite a gap of € 12 billion a year that eliminates a possible British departure from EU. That amounts to 1.11 percent of the European income. Countries such as Germany and the Netherlands do not want to go further than 1 percent.

Leaders said in the summer that the negotiations should be completed by the end of this year, but the views of the Member States still vary widely, partly because some countries are opposed to the proposed reduction in budgets for agriculture and regional development. Unanimity is required for a decision. The European Parliament wants to increase the budget to 1.3 percent of the European GDP.

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