New MFF – Three Comments on the Rule of Law Provision

Our Vít Havelka explores the first draft of the post-2020 Multiannual Financial Framework and a special provision ensuring that the beneficiary countries respect financial management and Rule of Law.

  • On the 2nd May 2018, the European Commission introduced its first draft of the post-2020 Multiannual Financial Framework as well as a special provision[1] outside the MFF regulation.
  • Its intention is to assure that beneficiary countries respect “a sound financial management and the Rule of Law” – if a member state breaches these principles, it will be deprived of access to EU funding so that the “financial interests of the Union are protected.”

If a country refuses the provision, it can be easily labelled as having problems with the Rule of Law. Finally yet importantly, it will also be legally possible to adjust the regulation in the future if it proves inefficient.

The triggering procedure should be clearly defined and should have a strong political or expert legitimacy. The current system, as proposed by the Commission, deficiently combines both approaches which results in reduced clarity – is the Commission as an expert institution responsible for the decision, or the Council as purely political body? In this respect, the upcoming MFF negations should resolve the ambiguity and opt for only one source of legitimacy.

You can read the whole blog on EurActiv.

#Multiannual Financial Framework #MFF #2020 #Rule of Law #special provision

Vít Havelka
Senior Research Fellow

Expertise: EU institutional relations with member states, europeisation, transformation role of EU

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