ONE seeks greater safeguards for world’s poorest in EU external budget

Brussels, 14 June 2018. Today the European Commission released its proposal for the new structure of the EU’s external financing programmes in the next Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF). The Commission presented a single external financing instrument in a bid to ensure greater flexibility.

Responding to the Commission’s proposal for a so-called ‘single instrument’, Emily Wigens, interim Brussels Director at anti-poverty group, The ONE Campaign, said:

“The EU’s external financing structure needs simplification to allow sufficient flexibility to respond to urgent needs without hampering long-term development plans. But above all, the new structure must ensure the EU lives up to its international commitments by guaranteeing both the necessary financial resources and ensuring the primary focus of EU aid is poverty eradication. On these crucial points we want to see greater ambition. It’s now up to the European Parliament and Member States to step up and deliver an EU aid budget that’s fit for purpose. If the EU wants to maintain its global leadership role, the next MFF must contain a 40 billion increase in EU aid, and safeguards that ensure it is targeted to the people, places and issues that need investment the most.”

The Commission’s proposal includes a prominent focus on migration, estimating that as much as 10% of the single instrument could be allocated to the issue. On this, Wigens added:

“Europe’s leaders must recognise that there can be no long-term solution to the refugee crisis without a visionary and ambitious new partnership with Africa. Africa is experiencing a population boom and will need to create 22.5 million jobs each year to provide employment for all. With the right level of investment, the next MFF could be game-changing in creating a more stable and prosperous future for Africa’s youth and Europe. It’s is a win-win opportunity that Europe must not miss.”

ENDS

Notes to Editors:

  • More information on the Commission proposal can be found here: https://ec.europa.eu/commission/publications/neighbourhood-and-world_en
  • The Regulation will be negotiated with the Member States and the European Parliament under the co-decision procedure
  • Agreement on the financial envelopes for each of the Headings within the MFF will now be negotiated with the Member States under the consent procedure – with the European Parliament able to veto a proposal, but not amend it