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System of own resources

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System of own resources

The own resources decision lays down the basic provisions for financing the European Union (EU) budget.


Council Decision 2007/436/EC, Euratom of 7 June 2007 on the system of the European Communities’ own resources


The operation of the European Union (EU) relies on a balanced budget that is financed entirely by own resources. The own resources ceiling is maintained at 1.23 % of all the Member States’ gross national income (GNI).

There are three categories of own resources: traditional own resources, the own resource based on value added tax (VAT) and the own resource based on gross national income (GNI). Other revenue sources include taxes paid by officials, fines imposed on firms by the Union and interest on late payments.

Traditional own resources

Traditional own resources consist of customs duties and levies on sugar production within the Union. Member States may retain, by way of collection costs, 25 % of the amounts raised.

VAT resource

A uniform rate of 0.30 % is collected on the harmonised VAT base of each Member State. The VAT base is limited to 50 % of each country’s gross national income (GNI). The aim of this rule is to prevent poorer Member States from having to pay a disproportionate amount.

Resource based on GNI

A uniform percentage is taken on the gross national income (GNI) of each EU Member State. This is used to finance the part of the EU budget that is not covered by the other own resources and other revenue sources. The aim is to balance revenue and expenditure.

Corrections in favour of certain Member States

Corrections are based on the principle whereby any Member State sustaining a budgetary burden which is excessive in relation to its relative prosperity is likely to benefit from a correction when the time comes.

The countries currently benefiting from this type of measure are the United Kingdom, Germany, Austria, Netherlands and Sweden.

Collection of own resources

The method for collecting own resources is determined by national provisions that are examined regularly by the Commission. The Member States inform the Commission of any anomalies having a financial impact with respect to collection.

Modification to the EU system of own resources

In June 2011, the Commission submitted a draft decision of the Council on the system of resources of the European Union for 2014-20. The decision, which was adopted by the Council in May 2014, will only enter into force when ratified by all Member States. However, once in force, it will apply retroactively with effect from 1 January 2014.



Entry into force - Expiry date

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal of the European Union

Decision No 2007/436/EC, Euratom



OJ L 163 of 23.6.2007


Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1287/2003 of 15 July 2003 on the harmonisation of gross national income at market prices (GNI Regulation) (OJ L 181, 19.7.2003).

Commission Decision 97/245/EC, Euratom of 20 March 1997 laying down the arrangements for the transmission of information to the Commission by the Member States under the Communities’ own resources system (OJ L 97, 12.4.1997).

Council Regulation (EEC, Euratom) No 1553/89 of 29 May 1989 on the definitive uniform arrangements for the collection of own resources accruing from value added tax (OJ L 155, 7.6.1989).

Proposal for a Council regulation on the methods and procedure for making available the own resource based on the value added tax (COM(2011) 737 final - Not published in the Official Journal).

This proposal, which should repeal and replace Regulation (EEC, Euratom) No 1553/89, sets out to define the method to be used by Member States to calculate the new VAT own resource and the procedures for its availability to the EU budget.

Report from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament - Seventh Report under Article 12 of Regulation (EEC, Euratom) No 1553/89 on VAT collection and control procedures (COM(2014) 69 final - Not published in the Official Journal).

Council Decision 2014/335/EU, Euratom of 26 May 2014 on the system of own resources of the European Union (OJ L 168, 7.6.2014).

Council Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 608/2014 of 26 May 2014 laying down implementing measures for the system of own resources of the European Union (OJ L 168, 7.6.2014).

Council Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 609/2014 of 26 May 2014 on the methods and procedure for making available the traditional, VAT and GNI-based own resources and on the measures to meet cash requirements (recast) (OJ L 168, 7.6.2014).

Last updated: 11.06.2014