Europe's Political Economy
The EU Budget
Deciding on the long term financial resources is a necessary step in order to make the policy objectives of the European Union a reality. While national economies are slowly recovering, the EU needs to give itself the means to implement strategies for growth. In this respect, 2011 will be a fundamental year for the European budget as the negotiations on the next Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) will start in the summer, when the European Commission will present its proposal.
While Member States still represent the decisive actors when it comes to budgetary issues, other institutions have become important players as results of the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon. Moreover, several EU bodies have been putting forward substantial inputs into the debate concerning the future structure and the governance of the budget, as the European Commission (EC) has been working on a far reaching budgetary reform for the last three years almost. Among the other institutions, the Committee of the Regions (CoR) has made the future MFF one of the top priorities of its mandate, given the importance territorial entities have when it comes to efficient and effective implementation of EU resources. In this framework, the Committee of the Regions wishes to ensure the involvement of local and regional authorities in the EU budget reform and in the financing of European policies.
The EU budget project, commissioned by the Committee of the Regions, addresses multiple issues related to the future budgetary resources of the Union, adopting also a territorial perspective. The EPC focuses in particular on the relationship between the EU spending and the principles of territorial cohesion and multilevel governance, while putting forward an analysis of the options for the next MFF.
In addition to several studies and analysis, the project also foresees a workshop on better spending and multilevel governance, which will gather policy makers and international experts.
The project is coordinated by Fabian Zuleeg, Chief Economist and Senior Policy Analyst.