Brussels, 25 September 2013
Amending EU budget 2013 in line with MFF political agreement
The Commission has adopted today the second instalment of its Draft Amending Budget 2 from 27 March 2013, amounting to EUR 3.9 billion after reallocation of available resources within the budget. The Council (Member States) and the European Parliament have already adopted the first instalment (EUR 7.3 billion) after agreeing to split the original Draft Amending Budget 2 in two in the course of the negotiations on the next financial period (Multiannual Financial Framework, MFF 2014-2020).
This proposal is linked to the adoption of the MFF as the European Parliament has stated that having an absolute guarantee that the outstanding payment claims for 2013 will be covered in full is one of the conditions to give its consent to the MFF regulation covering the next period (2014-2020).
This second instalment is based on updated estimates for payments in cohesion policy provided by Member States themselves; these estimates show that the 2013 budget, as adopted by the Council and the European Parliament, will not allow the EU to reimburse beneficiaries of EU funded programmes, mainly for completed projects under the cohesion policy.
"Time and again in the past few years I have warned that the voted EU budgets are well below the legitimate claims of EU beneficiaries, says Commissioner for EU budget Janusz Lewandowski. We see the result today as estimates of upcoming claims validated by Member States themselves clearly show that we need additional funds to meet our legal obligations towards beneficiaries of EU funds, mainly national, regional and local authorities who await EU reimbursements for EU funded projects they have completed at home. This amendment is particularly important, as it is a condition for the adoption of the next MFF. We owe it to the crisis-stricken Europe and hundreds of thousands of EU beneficiaries to finally adopt and implement the MFF as the EU budget constitutes an essential source of investment in EU countries. I trust that both Member States and the European Parliament will swiftly adopt this amendment to the EU budget".
The bulk of the EUR 3.9 billion will be spent to pay bills sent in by Member States in the cohesion policy area (i.e. EUR 3.1 bln). Some EUR 344 million will be used to reinforce instruments stimulating growth and jobs (so called, heading 1a), in particular research, SME financing and student mobility. Also EUR 121 million is proposed to help the victims of major humanitarian crises especially in Syria, Mali and the Horn of Africa (see table in the annex for more details).
The draft amending budget has to be approved by the budgetary authority: the Council (EU Member States) and the European Parliament.
The voted budget for 2013 set the level of payment appropriations EUR 5 billion below the Commission's proposal and EUR 2.9 billion below the final level of payments in the 2012 budget, creating a very tight situation for payments as from early 2013. Furthermore, the 2013 budget had to accommodate a backlog of payments created at the end of the year 2012 and moved onto the 2013 budget.
When adopting the 2013 EU budget last November, the Council and the Parliament issued a joint statement acknowledging that the level of payments proposed by the Commission in its 2013 draft budget was based on the assumption that payment needs in 2012 would have been solved in 2012. As this was not the case, the joint statement called for the Commission to present "at an early stage in the year 2013 a draft amending budget devoted to the sole purpose of covering the 2012 suspended claims (…) To ensure sound and accurate EU budgeting, the Council and the European Parliament will take position on this draft amending budget as quickly as possible in order to cover any outstanding gap". This was done via the Commission's Draft Amending Budget 2.
The Council and the Parliament agreed on a part of the amending budget no. 2 and asked the Commission to come with a proposal "in early autumn on the basis of the latest updated estimates regarding payment appropriations".
The draft amending budget does not include any additional requests for administration (running costs of EU institutions).
Second instalment of draft amending budget no. 2 (full document):
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