On 6December the CULT Committee adopted the Erasmus+ Implementation Report by MEP Milan Zver. All the amendments proposed by the European Youth Forum have been adopted, in particular two “difficult” ones, namely 1) the need to centralise part of KA2 to respond to the needs of European NGOs; 2) the need to strengthen the operational support to European NGOs in the framework of KA3 Civil Society Cooperation.

EFIL is looking forward to takeing part in the Public Consultation on Erasmus+ and to further contribute to the efforts to secure a role for European NGOs in the programme.

Also, last week (1 December) the European Parliament voted on the budget for 2017. MEPs voted to secure further €500 million of funding for the Youth Employment Initiative (YEI), as well as adding €200 million to initiatives for growth and jobs like COSME (supporting SMEs), Connecting Europe Facility (CEF, financing infrastructure projects), Horizon 2020 (research projects) and Erasmus+, which obtained €50 million more for 2017.

Even though young people are now the group at highest risk of poverty and social exclusion, the proportion of the EU budget used directly for youth remains low. EU leaders must live up to their promise and make youth a priority.

Discussions are also still ongoing between the Parliament and the Council regarding the revision of the Multi-Annual Financial Framework(MFF), which – through increased funding for Erasmus+ – could potentially allow more young people to take up the opportunity to study, volunteer and work aboard. The Youth Forum calls on EU leaders to make sure that youth will become a priority in the budgetary discussions as well and that the nice words will be translated into real budget commitments.

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