Negotiations are progressing on the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) post 2020. This framework will provide the budget for the eight years to come as from 2021. The process is extremely complicated as all Member States must agree on this framework.
This time additional complications are the Brexit process and the reductions granted to some Member States. Because of Brexit, at least 12 billion Euro will not be available for the budget. The UK contribution was 20 billion and they received 8 billion in return.
Countries like the Netherlands received a reduction on their contribution of 1 billion. Commissioner Juncker already indicated that he would delete all present reductions. However, his intention is not to reduce the total amount of the EU budget. Around 30 billion additional membership fees should be distributed amongst the 27 remaining Member States.
Germany and France have agreed to increase their contribution but have still practical difficulties to find the money in their national budget.
Other Member States are aiming at a more modernized budget reducing the expenses for agricultural policy and cohesion funds. The Netherlands is amongst them.
ESC is lobbying the European Commission to have room for smaller-scale subsidies in the Connecting Europe facilities, next to the present opportunities. An example here can be a subsidy to decrease the emissions of inland barges, to make them up to environmental standards. Now, only the projects of over 4 million get financed, while smaller projects get overpassed.
The whole process of negotiations will continue until the second week of May, when the European Commission will present the first draft of the Multiannual Financial Framework.