Following five days of discussions in Brussels, the European Council presented a balanced solution catering for the interests and positions of all Member States, amongst which Malta. The wide-ranging package combining the future Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) and a specific Recovery effort under Next Generation EU (NGEU) sets Malta to receive more than € 2 billion in EU funding over the 2021-2027 programming period. This is a substantial increase over the budget of more than €1 billion allocated over the 2014-2020 period. The new envelop for Malta comprises additional funding mechanisms to the 2014-2020, such as the Coronavirus Stimulus and the Recovery and Resilience packages.

The deal is made up of six main EU funding streams, with the Cohesion Policy totalling €934 million (including the React Programme) accounting for the largest share of funds which is more than €200 million increase over the allocation under the 2014-2020 programme. The funding instruments include the ERDF, ESF and the Cohesion Fund. A further breakdown of the package secured can be seen below.

table 1

The figure below provides a breakdown of the budget in percentage terms:

chart 2

The Council Conclusions consider this as an ambitious and comprehensive package combining the classical MFF with an extraordinary Recovery effort destined to tackle the effects of an unprecedented crisis in the best interest of the EU. The goal of the Recovery effort is to be a programme which is significant, focused and limited in time. Significant because the effects of the crisis are far-reaching. Focused because it must target the regions and sectors that are most hit by the crisis. Limited in time because the MFF and the rules governing it remain the basic frame for the Union's budgetary planning and implementation.[1]

These programmes will be disbursed as grants and loans via different instruments and programmes for consistency and coherence. Both NGEU and MFF will help transform the EU through its major policies, particularly the European Green Deal, the digital revolution as well as resilience.