Fin Min: Member states agree on 2019 draft EU budget

The Council is expected to adopt formally its position at the beginning of September. Photo: Shutterstock/esfera

Poland’s Ministry of Finance announced in a press release on Wednesday that an agreement among the EU member states had been reached, such that a reduction in Cohesion Policy funding had been avoided.

“The proposals were based on very cautious assumptions, taking into account the current pace of project implementation in the member states,” the Ministry wrote, adding that the agreement formed a basis for further negotiations with the European Parliament. The draft budget was first published by the European Commission in May this year.

According to Poland’s Ministry of Finances, it was important for Poland to develop solutions that would allow meeting new challenges facing the EU and fully implementing existing EU policies, particularly Cohesion Policy and Common Agricultural Policy, the former of which Poland receives the largest amount of all the EU member states.

The Ministry writes that “thanks to Poland’s active involvement, as well as the involvement of other EU countries,” it was possible to prevent a reduction in cohesion policy funding. “The European Council has agreed to the amount proposed by the European Commission for projects financed from cohesion policy funding (with small changes of a technical nature). Measures to prevent crises at the southern and eastern borders of the EU have also been guaranteed.”

“A joint declaration was also prepared, which obliges the EC to present changes to the EU budget for 2019. This is in case a significant acceleration of project implementation by the Member States occurs,” the Ministry writes.

In total, the European Council foresees EUR 164.1bn in commitments and EUR 148.2bn in payments for next year's budget. Compared to 2018, this is a 2 percent increase in commitments and a 2.5 percent increase in payments.

However, the Ministry emphasized that the agreement is strictly of a political nature. The Council is expected to adopt formally its position at the beginning of September.