The European Parliament's Budget Committee today debated the disbursement of the European Union Solidarity Fund (EUSF) to the tune of €446,8 million for assistance in the event of natural disasters. Bavarian MEP Henrike Hahn (The Greens/EFA), substitute member of the Committee on Budgets and shadow rapporteur for the European Union Solidarity Fund (EUSF), comments:
"Solidarity is a fundamental principle of the EU in times of crisis - this applies to member states as well as to countries that are in accession negotiations. Therefore, Turkey is to receive €400 million from the European Union Solidarity Fund (EUSF) in response to the earthquakes in February this year. This is lived solidarity and an important contribution to the financing of reconstruction and emergency measures in Turkey.
With the EUSF disbursements now pending, however, it must also be clear that combating climate change has to be the priority for the EU - and that it is a matter of preventive rather than after-the-fact measures. The current forest fires in the Mediterranean region and the floods and rainstorms in Central and Eastern Europe are a renewed wake-up call that extreme weather events are being amplified and multiplied by climate change. The motto is prevention instead of after-the-fact measures in times of climate change. EU funds must be ambitiously invested in the right places to combat climate change.
I therefore also welcome that the Commission in its proposal for the revision of the Multiannual Financial Framework provides for an increase in funds to be used for the EUSF and I hope that this will be expressly supported by the Council, including the German finance minister."
The EUSF will provide a total amount of €446,8 million. Romania is to receive €33.8 million for the droughts and forest fires between March and August 2022. Italy is supposed to receive €20.9 million for the floods in September 2022. Turkey is scheduled to receive €400 million in response to the earthquakes in February of this year. The Commission has assessed these emergencies and outlined the concrete financial support for each of the member countries, which now has to be approved by the European Parliament. A vote in the budget committee is scheduled for the 20th of September. The plenary is then expected to approve the disbursement in October.
I would be happy to answer any further questions.