Stay in the loop! Subscribe to our mailing list

EU’s budget saga: new top-up for Erasmus+ and Horizon Europe, but still pending final approval  

On 10 November, the European Parliament budget negotiators and the Council Presidency reached a compromise outlining a political agreement on the EU’s long-term budget (Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) 2021-2027).  

In the compromise, Parliament obtained EU16 billion on top of the package agreed by heads of state or government at their summit in July. EUR 15 billion will reinforce flagship programmes like health, research and Erasmus+ to protect citizens from the COVID-19 pandemic, provide opportunities to the next generation, and preserve European values. EUR 1 billion will increase flexibility to address future needs and crises.  

When it comes to Erasmus+, it is now foreseen to receive additional EUR 2.2 billion on top of EU21.2 billion agreed in July, which is roughly the equivalent of an additional year of the programme’s financing. ACA welcomes the decision to provide this top-up, which is extremely important for the successful implementation of the new ambitious goals set out in Erasmus+ 

The agreement was also reached to increase the budget of Horizon Europe by EUR 4 billion, compared to the July deal, bringing it to the total of EUR 84.9 billion. An important outcome of the negotiations, this increase however remains below expectations of the sector, which has been strongly advocating for a much more ambitious investment in Europe’s resilience and post-crisis recovery driven by research.  

Academic mobility and other ways of acquiring international and intercultural competences and experience lie at the core of training and upskilling (future) workforce that is able to take different perspectives into account and contribute to the solution of global challenges. These priorities should be considered in the process of making further decisions on the internal distribution of funds between various action lines of Erasmus+ and Horizon Europe.   

The achieved compromise will still have to be approved unanimously by all member states at the next European Council in Decemberas Hungary and Poland blocked the deal on 16 November due to the disagreements on the rule of law mechanisms attached to the EU funds. It is now critical for the members states to finalise the approval in order to avoid any disruptions to the start of the programmes 

More information: European Parliament