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Thursday, 03 November 2016

Parliament votes to boost EU spending on development

MEPs on Wednesday (26 October) approved a €500 million increase to EU spending to cover the costs of the refugee and migration crisis without cutting development aid. Europe’s response to the refugee crisis requires significant funds and the European Parliament has decided to make sure they will be available for 2017. In a resolution adopted on Wednesday (26 October), the European Parliament demanded more funds to assist third countries to mitigate the migration crisis. “The European budget must correspond to [the EU’s] political commitments and strategic objectives,” MEPs insisted. As well as voting to reverse all the Council’s proposed cuts in the draft EU budget for 2017, MEPs “strongly questioned” whether the funds available for projects in third countries were sufficient, especially in view of the current refugee crisis. Lawmakers suggested an increase of almost half a billion euros to the EU’s external spending, which finances its development and migration programmes. The vote was warmly welcomed by NGOs. “We call on the European Parliament to ensure that additional funds for external action in the 2017 budget are spent on addressing the root causes of displacement and not on border control,” said Natalia Alonso from Oxfam International.

Source: euractiv.com