The European Commission has amended the 2016 draft EU budget that it proposed on 27 May to reflect the political agreement on the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) reached between the European Parliament and the Council on the following day. The overall level for payments in the draft 2016 budget remains unchanged, while commitments are increased by EUR 303 million.
The political agreement on the financing of EFSI foresees that EUR 1 billion more (altogether EUR 3 billion) out of the total EUR 8 billion for the financing of EFSI will come from the unallocated margin of the budget instead of the redeployment of commitment appropriations from the Horizon 2020 and the Connecting Europe Facility. With this so-called 'amending letter', the European Commission proposes the first tranche of this EUR 1 billion: EUR 303 million for the year 2016.
Following the adoption by the Commission of the 2016 draft budget, the European Parliament and the Council will have to put forward their opinions on it. The final position of the Council is expected in the first half of September, while the European Parliament will vote on the issue in plenary at the end of October.
If the positions of the two sides differ, the two institutions together with the European Commission will try to find a solution. If no compromise is found after a 21-day conciliation period, the Commission must present a new draft budget.
Before the budget for the coming year is adopted, and ordinarily before Parliament's first reading of the draft budget, the Commission may present a letter of amendment to the draft budget on the basis of new information which was not available at the time that the draft budget was drawn up.