Multiannual financial framework for 2014-2020

The Council adopted the regulation on the current MFF on 2 December 2013.

Ceilings for 2014-2020

The regulation enables the European Union to spend up to €959.99 billion (all amounts on this page are indicated in 2011 prices) in commitments and €908.40 billion in payments over the years 2014-2020.


€959.99billion for commitments 
€908.40billion for payments


This is respectively 3.4% and 3.7% less than under the MFF for 2007-2013. The reduction reflects the Council's desire to ensure budgetary discipline for the EU and to take into account the particular budgetary pressures that member states currently face at national level.

Commitment appropriations per heading and subheading

Increasing growth and jobs

The expenditure ceiling for programmes boosting growth and creating jobs - subheading 1a ('Competitiveness') - amounts to €125.61 billion, which is an increase of more than 37% compared to the previous MFF. 

Reducing development differences between the regions

The expenditure limit under MFF subheading 1b ('Cohesion') is €325.15 billion. This expenditure is aimed at enabling the Union to fulfil its commitment to reducing disparities between the levels of development of the EU's different regions.  

Sustainable growth in the area of agriculture and rural development

The expenditure ceiling for heading 2 ('Sustainable growth: natural resources') is set at €373.18 billion.

Security and citizenship

Under heading 3 ('Security and citizenship') the expenditure limit is €15.69 billion. The measures to be financed under this heading include actions related to asylum and migration. It also covers initiatives related to external borders and internal security.

'Global Europe': EU external action

Under heading 4 ('Global Europe'), the EU can spend up to €58.70 billion. Most of this expenditure is dedicated to the EU's actions at international level.

Administrative expenditure

The expenditure limit under heading 5 ('Administration') is set at €61.63 billion. This amount has been cut by €2.5 billion compared to the previous MFF in order to take account of the EU's effort to consolidate public finances.

Special instruments

The MFF regulation also provides for a number of 'special instruments'. The purpose of these instruments is to allow the EU to react to unforeseen circumstances or to finance expenditure for clearly specified purposes, which cannot be financed within the MFF ceilings. 

Emergency aid reserve

The reserve is used to finance humanitarian aid, civilian crisis management and protection operations in non-EU countries in order to cope with unforeseen events. The annual amount of the reserve is €280 million.

EU solidarity fund

It is designed to provide financial assistance in the event of a major disaster in a member state or a candidate state. The annual amount to be budgeted for the fund cannot exceed €500 million.

Flexibility instrument 

This instrument is used for clearly identified needs that can not be financed within the limits of the MFF ceilings. Its maximum annual amount is fixed at €471 million.

European globalisation adjustment fund

It is intended to help workers made redundant as a result of major structural changes in world trade patterns or as a result of the global financial and economic crisis in their efforts to find new employment. It can be mobilised up to an annual amount of €150 million.

Contingency margin

It is a last resort instrument to react to unforeseen circumstances. It amounts to 0.03% of the EU's gross national income, i.e. around €4 billion. Any amounts made available are fully offset by a corresponding lowering of the MFF expenditure ceilings for the current year or future years. 

Specific flexibility to tackle youth unemployment and strengthen research

It provides for a frontloading of €2.543 billion in 2014 and 2015. The frontloaded amount is fully offset within and/or between headings in order to leave unchanged the total annual ceilings and the total allocation per heading.

Next step: review of the MFF

A review of the MFF will take place in 2016 at the latest. This will allow the the Council, the European Parliament, and the European Commission to reassess the priorities for the remaining years of the 2014-2020 financial framework. 

For the next MFF the Commission will have to present a proposal before 1 January 2018 and examine ways of aligning it with the political cycles of the institutions.