Preliminary agreement reached on 2019 EU budget

NEWS 05.12.2018 22:26
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Source: PHILIPPE HUGUEN / AFP

The European Parliament (EP) and the Austrian presidency of the Council of the European Union reached a provisional agreement on the European Union budget for 2019 on Tuesday, paving the way for the budget adoption by the end of 2018, the EU Council reported.

The deal needs to be backed by EU countries in the Council and the EP plenary next week.

The agreement sets the total commitments in the EU budget for 2019 at €165.8 billion, an increase of 3.17 percent compared to this year. Payments are set at €148.2 billion, a 2.37 percent increase compared to 2018.

Youth Employment Initiative, aiming to improve young people’s chances of getting a job, will receive an additional €350 million.
The Asylum, Migration, and Integration Fund will get an additional €1.1 billion, a substantial increase of nearly 56 percent compared to 2018, while the Internal Security Fund will receive €533.5 million.

Additional funds are provided for several agencies in charge of responding to the current migration and security challenges, the EU Council said.

The budget will also earmark €1.45 billion to the EU Facility for Refugees in Turkey, in line with agreement reached between the EU countries on how to finance an additional €3 billion for the facility to support Syrian refugees.

Pre-accession funds to Turkey have been cut by €146.7 million compared to the financial programming in view of the situation in Turkey as regards democracy, rule of law, human rights and press freedom, the EU Council said.

After the Council adopts its position on the EC’s new draft budget at the meeting of the General Affairs Council on December 11, the Parliament will have to formally endorse the deal as well, with the vote at the plenary session next week, the Council added.

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