EU: without budget agreement, no climate agreement?

Climate and budget issues are indeed closely linked, through the Just Transition Fund. The President of the European Council Charles Michel hopes to succeed at the end of the week in obtaining the commitment of the 27 to raise to -55% (against -40% currently) the Union’s objective of reducing its greenhouse gas emissions. greenhouse, compared to the 1990 level. This objective would be intermediate, on the way to climate neutrality in 2050.

But currently, Poland and Hungary are blocking the adoption of the EU’s multiannual budget as well as the text that would allow the financing of the European post-coronavirus recovery instrument. However, “without a multiannual budget, there will be no Fund for a just transition. And this fund is precisely intended to help the States to reach the climatic objectives”, indicates Monday a European source, upstream of the summit.

Budapest and Warsaw have opposed their “veto” to the 2021-2027 budgetary framework and to the Next Generation EU stimulus instrument (750 billion euros) to protest against the mechanism linking the granting of European funds from these two envelopes to the respect for the rule of law, as approved by the capitals by qualified majority.

This sudden stop jeopardizes the continuation of various European programs whose funding was only planned until the end of 2020. If there is no agreement quickly, the EU will be funded in provisional twelfths from January, without the possibility of renewing expiring envelopes or launching new programs.

Hungary and Poland are expected to indicate by Tuesday whether they are ready to compromise, according to an informed source. “If this signal does not come, we switch to plan B. The European Commission could then propose an agreement with 25 countries, for example on the basis of an intergovernmental agreement or a reinforced cooperation procedure”.

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