One of the key fault lines in the UK’s debate over EU membership concerns the amount the country contributes to the EU budget. Iain Begg writes that both sides of the referendum campaign are guilty of misleading the public over the issue, with the leave side frequently quoting contributions without applying the rebate, and the remain side comparing apples […]
Public investment under the new EU Cohesion Policy is helping Europe out of the crisis and into growth
The EU’s Cohesion Policy (often referred to as the Regional Policy of the European Union) is one of the most important areas of spending in the EU budget. It aims to improve development and generate growth and employment by funding projects in regions across Europe. Johannes Hahn, European Commissioner for Regional Policy, writes on the importance of Cohesion Policy […]
EU funding policies may be undermined by regional authorities using structural fund allocations to win votes at the local level
More than half of the EU budget is dedicated to Structural Funds, which are allocated across EU regions with the aim of promoting economic and social development. Lisa Dellmuth, Michael Stoffel and Dominik Schraff write that the use of decentralised authorities to allocate structural funding can create substantive problems for the EU’s policy goals. They illustrate that the distribution of […]
National politicians should keep an open mind over proposals to create a European Public Prosecutor’s Office
National parliaments in several European countries have voiced opposition against proposals to create a European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO). Hugo Brady provides an overview of what an EPPO would entail, and assesses the extent to which it would help tackle the misuse of EU funds. He argues that those who are sceptical about the proposals should keep an open mind […]
The European Commission should implement fair pay policies for research grants to stop the ‘brain drain’ from eastern Europe
A significant proportion of the EU budget is spent on research grants aimed at encouraging research and innovation across Europe. Michael Galsworthy argues that while this funding is vital for supporting research, particularly in those states struggling from the consequences of the financial crisis, there is a substantial East-West divide in terms of how it is distributed. One of the […]
Following lengthy negotiations earlier this year, the EU’s member states eventually agreed on the content of the 2014-2020 EU budget. Amélie Barbier-Gauchard writes that in addition to the budget, the EU’s member states also fund a number of projects and initiatives through ‘non-Community European spending’. This form of public spending involves EU members co-operating outside of the EU’s institutions, often […]
Brussels blog round-up for 22 – 28 June: MEPs in the limelight, France vs. the European Commission, and the EU’s new budget deal.
Chris Gilson takes a look at the week in Brussels blogging. The EU centre and the crisis Friday sees a meeting of the European Council in Brussels. Ahead of the summit, the European Council on Foreign Relations presents the view from seven of the EU’s capitals. The European Commission released its draft budget for 2014-2020 on Wednesday. Open Europe looks at […]
The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) is one of the EU’s oldest and most important policy instruments, making up around 40 per cent of the EU budget. Wyn Grant writes that the most recent round of proposed reforms to the CAP focus on giving member states more scope to follow their own policies: making the policy less ‘common’. But, he writes, […]
In February, after months of negotiations, the European Council agreed to a new multiannual budget for the EU for 2014 to 2020. Ahead of the European Parliament’s vote on the budget, Giacomo Benedetto takes an in-depth look at how spending has changed across policy areas, finding that the largest cuts have been made to policies aimed at enhancing growth, infrastructure and […]
Brussels blog round-up for 9 – 15 February: A reduced EU budget, the Anglo-German axis, and a transatlantic trade pact?
Chris Gilson takes a look at the week in Brussels blogging. The EU centre Last week, the European Council agreed to a deal that would reduce the European budget in real terms for the first time (Open Europe has a good budget breakdown). On her blog, Neelie Kroes, Vice-President of the European Commission says that the budget is one for European […]
Despite a historic fall in spending, last week’s budget deal will help to increase the EU’s effectiveness.
At last week’s European Council summit, the EU’s leaders agreed to a real terms spending cut to the EU budget for the first time. Despite this, Patrick Diamond and Renaud Thillaye argue that not only could the overall amount of money spent at EU level be higher in the next seven years, but that a great deal will also depend […]
Member states will inevitably reach a compromise on the EU budget, but there is little chance of necessary reforms being carried out.
Last month’s European Council summit failed to secure an agreement on the next seven years of the EU’s budget (2014-2020). Ahead of another Council summit later this week, Jorge Núñez Ferrer writes that EU governments have the broad foundations for a compromise based around the proposals of Council President Herman Van Rompuy. He argues, however, that the eventual compromise will […]
Five minutes with Richard Corbett “The only thing that some countries seem to be interested in is how much they put into the budget and how much they get out, not what it is actually used for.”
This week sees a major European Council summit to resolve the on-going debate over the EU’s budget. In an interview with EUROPP editors Chris Gilson and Stuart A Brown, Richard Corbett, Adviser to President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy, discusses the upcoming summit, the role of the President, and the UK’s relationship with and influence in the EU. […]
The EU budget process encourages deadlock and makes large reforms almost impossible. The best that reformers can hope for is gradual change.
Ahead of tomorrow’s European Council summit to discuss the EU budget, Peter Becker assesses the prospects for EU heads of state and government reaching a deal. He argues that the negotiation process facilitates deadlock between member states because it is dominated by concerns over the net balance paid into the budget by individual countries. The process also makes reform extremely […]
On the 22nd and 23rd of November, the European Council will meet to discuss the next seven years (2014-2020) of the EU budget. While this process is typically prolonged and divisive, the upcoming negotiations are expected to be particularly problematic due to the commitment of the UK government to avoid a real-terms increase in the overall size of the budget. […]
The investment in innovation and technology needed to combat the economic crisis may be the main casualties of the EU’s budget squeeze.
The EU’s budgetary framework works in seven year cycles with negotiations now on-going for the upcoming 2014-2020 spending programme. Ahead of a special summit on the EU’s budget next month, Giacomo Benedetto and Simona Milio write that while the budget is relatively small compared to the EU’s gross national income, expected cuts mean that investment programmes which can make a difference in […]
The eurozone needs its own budget with significant capacity to absorb major shocks and tackle the crisis.
Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council, has called for a euro-area budget, with the ability to absorb country-specific shocks in member states at a central level. Guntram Wolff looks at these proposals, saying that there is a strong case for a eurozone federal budget, and a strongly defined banking union, to be used for stabilisation policy. He suggests that […]
While public attention is focused on the eurozone crisis, EU Member States and the European Parliament are locked in a struggle over reforming the Common Agricultural Policy.
Several attempts have been made to reform the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) in recent years. Christilla Roederer-Rynning writes that while previous CAP negotiations have proven controversial, the latest attempt has largely been overshadowed by the on-going eurozone crisis. Nevertheless, the current process is no less contentious, not least because the increased powers granted to the European Parliament by the […]
EU budget negotiations continue against a backdrop of austerity. But they are still in need of reform to produce a more efficient financial framework.
The on-going negotiation of the EU’s budget is heavily constrained by how the decision process takes place, with member states focusing on narrowly defined national interests, rather than on securing a better budget for Europe. Sara Hagemann argues that how the EU budget is negotiated must be reformed altogether if the EU is to address the new challenges it is […]