On 11 November the Council and the European Parliament agreed on the 2014 EU budget and on the financing of € 400.5 million to redress damages from natural disasters in four member states.
In the Conciliation Committee, the two institutions agreed on € 135.50 billion for overall payment appropriations and € 142.64 billion for commitment appropriations for the EU budget for 2014.
This is a decrease of 6.5% for payments and of 6.2% for commitments compared to the EU budget for 2013.
Both institutions agreed that the 2014 EU budget should be an investment budget stimulating growth, innovation and jobs, particularly for young people.
“I’m glad that we could reach an agreement with the European Parliament on the financing of priority areas such as growth, employment, innovation and humanitarian aid. We also agreed to reinforce the financing of migration, FRONTEX, the European Asylum Support Office, Europol and the three supervisory authorities, which are important for the proper implementation of the Economic and Monetary Union,” said Lithuanian Vice-Minister of Finance Algimantas Rimkūnas.
The agreed 2014 EU budget, which is the first under the EU’s new Multiannual Financial Framework, among other things, contains:
– support for smart and inclusive growth: € 64 billion in commitments and € 62.4 billion in payments
– support for measures aimed at sustainable growth: € 59.3 billion in commitments and € 56.5 billion in payments
– research framework programme Horizon 2020: € 9 billion in commitments and € 6 billion in payments
– Youth Employment Initiative: € 3.9 billion in commitments and € 900 million in payments to kickstart the programme
– humanitarian aid (notably for the victims of war in Syria and Lampedusa refugees): € 920 million in commitments and € 785 million in payments.
In the EU budget ‘commitment appropriations’ are legal promises to spend money which may be paid out over several financial years. The ‘payment appropriations’ are the actual amounts to be paid in a given year.
The agreement includes draft amending budget No. 9 for 2013, which would mobilise the EU Solidarity Fund to provide financial assistance of € 400.5 million to repair damages caused in 2013 by floods in Germany (360.5 million), Austria (21.7 million) and the Czech Republic (15.9 million) and drought in Romania (2.5 million).
The Council is expected to formally approve the agreed budget and the draft amending budget No. 9 on 19 November, the European Parliament’s approval should follow on 20 November.