Global Europe: MEPs back EU external cooperation funding instrument worth €79.5 billion

(Source: European Parliament)

  • 79.5 billion EUR (in current prices) for development, neighbourhood and international cooperation over next seven years
  • Increased focus on rule of law, democracy, human rights support, and strengthened scrutiny by Parliament
  • Deal brings external funding programmes under one instrument for the first time

The Global Europe fund will be used to support sustainable development in EU neighbourhood countries, Africa, Asia, the Americas, the Pacific and the Caribbean.

Parliament gave the green light on Wednesday to the setup of the new Global Europe instrument (the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument – NDICI), confirming an agreement reached with the Council in December 2020.

Global Europe, which for the first time brings the majority of the EU’s various external cooperation funding streams under one umbrella instrument, will provide funding of 79.5 billion EUR (in current prices) for 2021-2027. It will be used to support sustainable development in EU neighbourhood countries, Africa, Asia, the Americas, the Pacific and the Caribbean.

Human rights, civil society, global challenges

In addition to a focus on sustainable development, Global Europe will advance key thematic aspects of EU external policy, including, programmes promoting human rights, democracy, civil society. Funding from the instrument will also go towards global challenges, including climate change, migration, peace and stability, as well as cooperation with strategic partners and the promotion of the EU’s own foreign policy initiatives.

High-level dialogue

In concluding the agreement with Council in December 2020, Parliament secured increased involvement in the definition of the main strategic objectives of the instrument, alongside increased scrutiny comprising a high-level geopolitical dialogue with the Commission on Global Europe’s implementation.

Next steps

Since there the only amendment was rejected, the bill was deemed approved, according to the ordinary legislative procedure. The regulation will retroactively apply from 1 January this year.


The objective of this instrument is to provide financial assistance to support the European Union’s values, principles and fundamental interests worldwide. It aims to eradicate poverty, support democracy, rule of law and respect for human rights, sustainable development and the fight against climate change.

More details on the various Global Europe programmes and pillars, background information, as well as quotes are available in the press release on the political agreement (15.12.2020).

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