Estonia to lead the EU budget negotiations

The Council of the EU, the European Parliament and the representatives of the European Commission are meeting today in Brussels to discuss the 2018 EU draft budget for the first time. The negotiations will be led by the Deputy Minister of Finance Märt Kivine.

“The successful approval of the revenue and expenditure of the EU budget for 2018 is one of the priority tasks during the Estonian Presidency of the Council of the EU,” Märt Kivine said. “The Council’s position provides a solid foundation, based on which to agree on such EU budget for 2018 that would take the European Union forward. The Council proposes, in line with its generally frugal approach to the budget, to focus the resources on areas with the highest added value.”

The ambassadors of the member states approved the common position of the Council of the EU with regard to the 2018 EU draft budget on Wednesday. The Council’s position for 2018 provides €158.9 billion for commitments with regard to expenditure. A total of €144.4 billion of the 2018 budget has been planned for payments in the following year, which is 7.4% more than this year.

The Council’s position strongly focuses on measures, which aim to stimulate the creation of jobs and growth, strengthen security and address the migration issue.

In the 2018 budget, the Council wants to contribute to smart and inclusive growth by providing €76.5 billion for commitments, which is 2% more than this year. In doing so, the Council requests to increase its appropriations for commitments in connecting Europe facility by nearly 4%, which would amount to €2.7 billion in support of trans-European networks in transport, energy and communication networks.

According to the Council’s proposal, the Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD) would receive €556.9 million in the following year. The appropriations from structural and investment funds will increase by a quarter, since the regional policy has been successfully implemented in the member states. The payments will increase significantly, because the implementation of the 2014-2020 budget period programmes has reached cruising speed following the initial start-up years.

Source: Estonian Ministry of Finance

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