EU proposes 30% jump in crisis funding as US steps back

Brussels European Union's Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini will propose a 30 percent rise in its foreign aid budget for 2021-2027, as the bloc seeks to increase its influence while the United States pulls back, Reuters reported.

As the European Commission sets out its common budget proposal on Wednesday, Mogherini will also propose a single fund responsible for managing most of the 123 billion euros ($148 billion) planned for the 2021-2027 period, an internal document shows.

The increase compared to 95 billion euros for the 2014-2020 external financing budget, split between 19 EU instruments, each with separate geographical and administrative procedures. A few separate EU funds would still remain, for instance for funding Syrian refugees in Turkey.

The United States spends about $50 billion a year in foreign aid, but that includes running diplomatic missions and giving academic grants. US President Donald Trump has withheld aid in the Middle East and at a recent Syria donor conference, questioning its value and calling on others to pay.

Source: International Islamic News Agency