EPRS Admin By / May 4, 2021

mff and electoral cycle

Multiannual financial framework and European Parliament election cycles

Multiannual financial framework and European Parliament election cycles

Lengthening the duration of the MFF created a structural misalignment between the financial and the political cycle. As shown in Figure 2, the electoral cycle of the European Parliament is five years (by extension that is also the term of the Commission), and the MFF has a seven-year cycle. This misalignment sends a message of detachment from the electoral choices of citizens, rather than of alignment of the EU’s political priorities with these choices. Despite the fact that the EU budget is indeed voted by elected representatives in both the Parliament and the Council, it is still perceived as something rather technocratic and lacking a link to the electoral accountability of those who decide on the EU budget. This undermines the legitimacy and importance of the European elections as an instrument to establish and realise the political priorities through elected representatives.


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