On 7-8 February, European leaders will meet in Brussels to seek to reach a deal on the bloc’s next seven-year budget. A first round of talks among EU leaders ended without agreement in November, when plans to cut the EU’s €1 trillion budget failed to get agreement. The talks are headed by EU Council President Herman van Rompuy, but Ireland will need to play a role as a broker for the agreement.
The negotiations for a new multi-annual budget for the European Union seem thus far to have taken place in a vacuum. There is virtually no public debate or media attention for what is likely to be one of the biggest political decisions to be taken in the coming years. - Dóchas
The current Van Rompuy proposals envisage a cut to earlier European Commission proposals of €9.3 billion for 'Global Europe' spending (a cut of 13%) and €3.02 billion for the European Development Fund (a cut of 11%). What is more, Van Rompuy has indicated that he will be seeking an additional €25 billion gross cut in the EU budget, to allow for an increase of €5 billion each in the agriculture and cohesion headings.
'Global Europe' spending covers all external action by the EU apart from the EDF. It includes the Development Cooperation Instrument (DCI) and the Humanitarian Aid Instrument, which together comprise over 30% of its budget.
...Read more in the Dóchas briefing paper on the Irish EU Presidency and the 2014-2020 EU Budget.
More links and background will be uploaded here on the Irish EU Presidency and the 2014-2020 EU Budget negotiations. An excellent starting point is here.