After months of discussions culminating in a 15-hour negotiation last Thursday, EU leaders agreed to increase the 2017 EU aid budget beyond the limits set in 2013.
An extra 730 million euro has been allocated to address the refugee crisis outside EU borders. These funds are added on top of previous funds for long-term development programmes. That means that these programmes are now protected from their funding being redirected to finance new priorities. This is great news!
EU leaders heard ONE’s message that “Yesterday’s solutions no longer work today” and that the EU can no longer work in the budget limits set in 2013 if it wants to both respond to the global refugee crisis and continue the fight against extreme poverty.
We couldn’t have achieved this great outcome without the help of our amazing ONE members! More than 35,000 EU citizens signed the #EUbudget petition, 1,592 members wrote an email to their finance ministers and key EU leaders were the targets of more than 2,460 tweets.
ONE Youth Ambassadors also did an incredible job in ensuring next year’s EU budget included increased funding for aid. It started with a lobby day in the European Parliament in September where they met with Members of the European Parliament working on the budget. While negotiations were ongoing, they handed in ONE’s petition to the European Commissioner for Budget Kristalina Georgieva and sent hand-written letters to their finance ministers.
They also woke up extra early in the morning to put up posters all around the EU quarter in Brussels sending the message to EU leaders that they should increase aid in the 2017 EU budget.
All of these actions helped make EU leaders realise that the world is paying attention to them and this important matter.
Although we achieved a general increase in the aid budget, aid specifically earmarked for humanitarian emergencies in 2017 was cut by 15% compared with 2016. With your help, we will continue to fight for more humanitarian assistance in 2017. Stay tuned!
We want to give everyone a HUGE thank you all for your hard work and dedication! Join us in celebrating this great outcome by sharing the good news on Facebook and Twitter.