For the first time, the European Parliament will vote on a revision that will allow the EU's budget to adapt to fast-changing realities. MEPs want more flexibility in the use of funds, especially when emergencies arise.
For the EU to do what it said it would, money is crucial. The Multiannual Financial Framework or MFF is the union's seven-year budget. The 28 member states contribute to the pot, making up around 1% of the bloc's gross national income. Money goes to six EU policy areas, from growth to global action, with a buffer amount for unforeseen cases. The framework also ensures that the EU does not spend more than it receives and sticks to the plan. But seven years is a long time. Times change. The European Parliament is voting this year on the first-ever MFF revision that will make the budget more flexible and open to changes. There are discrepancies between much talked about issues like migration, security, investment, youth vis-à-vis the very tiny budget. More money will go to tackling migration, security and external border control; to stimulating growth and creating jobs; and it will be flexible enough to pool funds for emergencies. This is about the normal lives. So if we have better protected borders, is it important for the concrete person? Absolutely yes. His life will be safer, better, so this is about citizens. The bottom line for the European Parliament? If the EU is to do more, it needs a bigger pot.