European Interest

EU budget 2022: “Next year’s EU budget must be a recovery budget”

flickr/Lisbon Council/CC BY 2.0

Health, a strong economy, the young as well as the green and digital transitions were among budget MEPs’ top priorities stated in the debate with Commissioner Hahn on next year’s EU budget.

The Commission proposed an annual EU budget of €167.8 billion for 2022 on Tuesday, to be complemented by an estimated €143.5 billion in grants under the “NextGenerationEU” recovery plan.                                                                                                         Karlo Ressler (EPP, HR), general rapporteur for the EU budget 2022, took the floor after Commissioner Johannes Hahn presented the draft budget to the members of the Committee on Budgets on Tuesday. He underlined the importance of an urgent recovery from the economic and social crisis “which has hit people, sectors and regions unequally”. Despite positive signals on the evolution of the pandemic, the EU “should not lower its guard when it comes to public health”, said Mr Ressler, stressing that he hopes that the 2022 budget will “lay the foundations for a more resilient union.”                                                    MEPs will now look into the proposal in detail. Among their priorities, based on the EP’s guidelines for 2022 from March, were support for boosting public health, climate action and biodiversity, the green and digital transitions, research, SMEs, but also supporting the young, values and principles, migration and security and the EU neighbourhood as well as other external policies.

Karlo Ressler (EPP, HR), general rapporteur for the EU budget 2022 (for section III – Commission): “The next annual EU budget has to be a recovery budget in all its aspects. Recovery fitted for all regions, all sectors and all generations. This means prioritising those most affected by the economic crisis, such as small and medium enterprises and young generations. We have to keep Europe competitive in the global market, with focus on jobs, and with strong investments in digital sector, green economy and secure infrastructure. For this reason, we will strive to reinforce the Commission proposal with all available budgetary means so that 2022 can be a turning point in the recovery.”                                    Damian Boeselager (Greens/EFA, DE), rapporteur for the other sections: “The 2022 budget will be the first one to address a ‘new normal’ and includes lessons learned from the pandemic. The Parliament, with its guidelines, has adopted a strong position to equip MEPs to fulfil their legislative and supervisory roles, while making sure that the Parliament leads the way on sustainability, gender-equality and digital resilience.”

Parliament will vote its position for the budgetary negotiations during the plenary session of 18-21 October. The 21-day conciliation period then runs from 26 October to 15 November. If no agreement between Parliament and Council has been found by the end of the conciliation period, the Commission must propose a second draft budget, and negotiations continue. The full calendar for the budgetary procedure 2022 is available here.

On 8 June, Johannes Hahn, Commissioner responsible for the Budget and Human Resources, has presented to the Members of the Committee on Budgets the Commission’s Draft Budget for the year 2022, right after its adoption by the college of Commissioners. In line with Article 314 TFEU, this presentation kicks off the annual budgetary procedure, whereby Parliament is expected to respond to Council’s position on the draft budget in the autumn.

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