9 October 2019
The European Union’s long-term budget, the multiannual financial framework (MFF) is set to be discussed in the European Parliament today with statements from the Commission and Council.
Speaking ahead of the debate, the European Green Party co-chairs Reinhard Bütikofer and Monica Frassoni said:
“This budget must be backed up by a concrete plans within an actionable framework If we are to guarantee that the European Green Deal under Von der Leyen’s stewardship goes beyond good intentions.
“A first step must be to increase climate-related spending to 50 percent and guarantee the EU budget will not decrease in volume even in the case of Brexit. The political calculus for the 2020s is unlike anything we have faced before. We’ve seen climate destruction and biodiversity loss on an unprecedented scale and worse could still be to come if we do not change course. Fresh thinking and an end to business as usual is now our only option.
“A meaningful intervention from the EU to combat these challenges can only be possible if it is able to levy its own resources. As Greens we need a basket of proposals as part of a harmonised process to ensure that it’s the big polluters and not the people who pick up the bill. We also need to overhaul our Common Agriculture Policy, which distorts competition and discourages innovation.
“Instead, spending must be redirected towards social policies such as the Youth Employment Initiative and the European Social Fund so we can guarantee a just transition with new Green jobs that are high on value and low on carbon. Additional funds towards managing migration are welcome but must be geared towards better integration rather than turning the Mediterranean and other European border areas into a military zone.
"The EU also has to invest adequate resources into its foreign policy. This pertains, for example, to the EU's Asia Connectivity policy that cannot be effectively implemented with the funds foreseen so far. We also have to provide more funding for people-2-people exchanges with our global partners. And civil conflict prevention and conflict resolution efforts with which the EU has contributed to many peace efforts in the past should not be downgraded in the MFF.”
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