The Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) is the budget of the European Union and the most important tool to finance common policy areas, actions and strategies. Upon a proposal from the European Commission, it has to be approved by the majority of the members of the European Parliament, before it can be unanimously adopted by the Council. Furthermore, the Own Resources Decision has to be adopted with unanimity within the Council and be ratified by all 27 Member States in accordance with their constitutional requirements.
Reaching an agreement between the three negotiating institutions will not be straightforward, as views on the development of the financial resources of the European Union diverge considerably. Nevertheless, a decision has to be taken by the end of 2012 in order to be able to implement the new MFF properly.
With this paper, the Centre for European Studies contributes to the debate. The paper describes the European Commission's proposal, the European Parliament's resolutions on the topic as well as the positions of two Members of the Council. In addition, the paper sheds light on where the positions differ and where there is common ground and room for compromise.