As time has ticked on, CAN-Europe has kept a close watch over the negotiations on the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) – more commonly known as the EU budget – which should be concluded at the end of this year.

The upcoming time frame (2014-2020) poses a number of challenges that did not exist in the previous framework period (2007-2013). The EU needs to act on a number of commitments related to both overseas development aid (ODA) and international climate finance.

The MFF is a key opportunity for the EU to show leadership on these commitments. Not only does it help encourage Member States to meet their national ODA targets, it also allows the EU to be an active participant in the initiation of the Green Climate Fund (GCF), which it must do to ensure this vital tool enables mitigation and adaptation to climate change in developing countries.

CAN-Europe has been working hard to bring attention and facilitate effective action on ensuring that climate change and sustainable development are at the forefront of decisions on external aid. As discussions heighten between Members of the European Parliament, the European Commission and European Council working on the MFF, now is the time to make sure that our key demands for environmental sustainability are put forward. They include:

• Ensuring that ambition on ODA levels is retained and re-enforced. EU Member States should reach a level of at least 0.7% of Gross National Income (GNI) by 2015;
• Honouring commitments to international climate finance – providing USD100 billion by 2020;
• Crucial to this commitment, the EU should agree on an equitable definition of ‘additionality’ in terms of climate finance – it should not divert funds already devoted to development aid and the EU’s progress in achieving the Millennium Development Goals;
• Inclusion of civil society in on-going discussions and processes.

CAN Europe will continue to push for an equitable and effective outcome as the negotiations come to a close.