European Council fails to reach agreement on financial framework

European Council fails to reach agreement on financial framework

The special meeting of the European Council that began on Thursday in Brussels did not reach an agreement on the forthcoming multiannual financial framework, that is, the long-term EU budget for 2021–2027. The negotiations will resume later.

The meeting, which began on Thursday 20 February, showed that there are still significant discrepancies between the positions of the Member States. The discussion was based on a proposal prepared by European Council President Charles Michel. Michel’s proposal, in turn, was adapted from the one prepared by the Finnish Presidency of the European Union.

The overall level in Michel’s proposal is 1.10 per cent of the EU Member States’ gross national income (including special instruments outside the framework). In Finland’s view, that the overall level of the framework should be as close as possible to the level of the current financial framework, which is 1.06 per cent of the Member States’ total GNI including special instruments. In addition to a moderate overall level, important issues for Finland in the further negotiations will include the level of funding for rural development, support for research and innovation, and linking EU funds to compliance with the rule of law.

“We held discussions with all the Member States on Thursday and Friday and with President Michel on a bilateral basis. There are still many discrepancies in the views of the Member States. Finland stuck to its objectives but also emphasised the importance of compromises in reaching an agreement,” said Prime Minister Sanna Marin.