On 18th November the Parliament and the Council finally reached a provisional deal on the EU budget 2020. The deal is considered a step forward by S&D MEPs Eider Gardiazabal Rubial and Pierre Larrouturrou because it will allow more investment in climate action, youth employment and research.
The provisional deal includes, notably, €500 million more for climate action than the Commission's proposal and strengthened resources for the Youth Employment Initiative, which now has additional €23.8 million.
MEPs are relieved at the result after a long-standing discussion with the Council over better support for climate action, research and the young in the 2020 EU budget. The appetite for cuts in public spending is never off the table in this debate, especially on the Council side. Hence the increased resources are to be considered a step forward for an agenda aimed at creating a fairer society.
However, we will not celebrate until public spending is called social investment and until social justice and the overall sustainability of society, including the economy, guide budget decisions, and are not just rhetoric. It is crucial that funding for climate action encompasses the social hardships posed by global warming, and for the youth initiative to provide young people in the EU with quality and self-fulfilling opportunities and not just serve to create better looking employment rates.
As shown by our Social Rights Monitor, the indicators that are chosen to create a "picture" of our society can get the picture out of focus. For EU policies to have a real impact, we need to adjust our goals and be as ambitious as the challenges that we face, and select the indicators that grasp the complexity of our reality. While waiting for the final say on the Multiannual Financial Framework, we will continue advocating for a budget underpinned by sustainability in all its three dimensions.