The General Affairs Council (GAC) is responsible for ensuring consistency in the work of all Council configurations. It prepares and follows up on meetings of the European Council.
It is responsible for a number of cross-cutting policy areas, which include EU enlargement and accession negotiations, the adoption of the multiannual financial framework (the EU's 7 year budget plan), cohesion policy, matters relating to the EU's institutional set-up and any dossier entrusted to it by the European Council.
The GAC covers a range of issues involving the Council’s cooperation with other EU institutions such as the relationship with the European Parliament and the Commission. Generally speaking, GAC handles issues that affect the way the EU operates and supports the political work of the other Council configurations.
One of its priorities is the cohesion policy which is financed by the Cohesion Fund and two structural funds, the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the European Social Fund (ESF). The cohesion policy`s objective is to develop the most disadvantaged regions and Member States, to increase competitiveness, employment and attractiveness of regions and strengthen transnational, interregional and cross-border cooperation.