The European Parliament gave its final approval of the Brexit Adjustment Reserve on Wednesday, a fund of €5 billion (2018 value) intended to alleviate the effects of the UK’s exit from the EU.
€1.6 billion will be available by the end of this year, with the remaining funds to be disbursed in 2022, 2023 and 2025.
Belgium will be one of the principal beneficiaries of the fund and is currently due to receive €350 million, of which a significant portion will go to the fishing industry.
With the physical proximity of the two nations, the UK was still Belgium’s fifth most important nation for exports (6.1%), despite the value of exports dropping by around €3 billion since 2018.
Indeed, credit insurer Euler Hermes forecast last year that a hard Brexit would cost Belgium €3.2 billion in exports – a prediction that so far seems to be accurate.
Ireland – the only Member State that shares a land border with the UK – should receive approximately €1 billion, the Netherlands around €810 million, France around €670 million, and Germany around €590 million.
“Thanks to the clear criteria, the €5 billion sum will be used where it is most needed. We are pleased that the first payments will be made at the end of the year,” stated MEP Pascal Arimont (CSP) who worked on the fund.