Monday

23rd Apr 2018

Agenda

Money issues to dominate THIS WEEK

  • Money disputes are set to dominate in Brussels this week and next (Photo: bundesbank.de)

Negotiations on next year's EU budget and how to pay around €9 billion in bills from 2012 will take centre-stage this week after discussions on the issue collapsed on Friday evening.

Member states and MEPs are due to revisit the issue once more on Tuesday. At midnight a special conciliation period for the talks expires.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

The European Parliament wants an increase of 6.9 percent for the 2013 budget. Member states, busily cutting public spending at home, have baulked and say they will only agree a 2.79 percent increase. If no agreement is reached, the commission could be forced to table a new budget proposal for 2013.

The bad feeling created by the dispute is set to further blacken the atmosphere of the 22-23 November summit, where EU leaders are supposed to agree longterm EU spending (2014-2021).

A series of member states - including the UK, Denmark, the Netherlands, France, and, lately, Austria - have said they will veto the agreement if the budget does not reflect their individual wishes.

EU commissioners will on Wednesday once again discuss the controversial issue of legislating in order to ensure there are more women on the boards of top companies.

The debate - pushed by justice commissioner Viviane Reding - comes weeks after the initiative was pulled from the decision table amid disagreement among the commissioners.

Among those not in favour of the idea of a mandatory quota of 40 percent women on corporate boards were her female colleagues Neelie Kroes (Dutch) and Cecilia Malmstrom (Swedish).

Reding, known for her determined style and affection for citizen-friendly legislation, immediately promised to revisit the issue saying that she is not a fan of quotas but likes what they do.

Eurozone finance ministers will gather in Brussels on Monday evening but, Germany - the continent's paymaster - has made it clear that the meeting is not expected to result in a decision to release the next tranche of bailout money to Greece.

Athens, for its part, has been saying that it needs the €31.5 billion by mid November to be able to pay its bills. Anticipating that it will not get the money in time, Greece plans on Tuesday to issue bonds to cover debt repayments due on Friday.

The following day, during a meeting of all EU finance ministers, the European Commission will present plans to allow 11 member states to push ahead with introducing a financial transactions tax.

The substance of the proposal is to come later in the year.

Ministers will also have a discussion on plans for a single European banking supervisor, with an end-of-year deadline for a proposal set by EU leaders during their October summit.

On Tuesday, Maltese would-be EU health commissioner Tonio Borg is to be grilled by MEPs. He is meant to replace his compatriot John Dalli, who last month lost his job following a tobacco industry-related scandal.

The European Commission, which has been embarrassed by the continued lack of clarity surrounding Dalli's resignation, is hoping Borg - until now Malta's foreign minister - will quickly be able to take up the post.

However, some MEPs and NGOs have already been criticising Borg's social views and health policy experience. The question of when he is appointed will have a crucial bearing on whether a piece of tobacco legislation will make it through the current legislative period.

Georgian Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili will come to Brussels Monday, on his first foreign trip.

The move is designed to show the EU capital that Tbilisi is still looking Westwards, rather than towards Russia. It also comes as the EU - riven with its own problems - is seen to be losing its political grip on its eastern neighbours.

Whistleblowers, Syria and digital revolution This WEEK

The European Commission will present proposals to protect whistleblowers, combat fake news and organise the digital single market. The international community will gather in Brussels to discuss how to help Syrians in the current war and after.

Macron and Syria top EU agenda This WEEK

French president to deliver speech on EU democratic model after populist victories in Hungary and Italy and amid an escalation of the Syria crisis.

Facebook and Hungary top EU agenda This Week

The US internet giant's massive data breach will be discussed in the EU, while Europe will find out whether Viktor Orban and his party are re-elected for another term to lead Hungary.

France tightens immigration law, sparking division

French lawmakers are cracking down on asylum seekers in a bid to send those rejected back home. Controversial measures they passed over the weekend will now be debated in the French senate in June.

News in Brief

  1. Commission will 'not shy away' from Malta killing repercussions
  2. EU Commission opens probe on Alitalia state loan
  3. Paris suspect given 20-year sentence for Brussels shoot-out
  4. Merkel and Pena Nieto praise EU-Mexico trade agreement
  5. Nahles elected new leader of Germany's SPD
  6. Report: EU budget to refocus on South
  7. Audit office: Brexit 'divorce' bill could be billions higher
  8. MEPs urge better protection for journalists

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Macedonian Human Rights MovementOxford Professor Calls for an End to the Anti-Macedonian Name Negotiations
  2. ACCAPeople Who Speak-Up Should Feel Safe to Do So
  3. Mission of China to the EUProgress on China-EU Cooperation
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersWorld's Energy Ministers to Meet in Oresund in May to Discuss Green Energy
  5. ILGA EuropeParabéns! Portugal Votes to Respect the Rights of Trans and Intersex People
  6. Mission of China to the EUJobs, Energy, Steel: Government Work Report Sets China's Targets
  7. Martens CentreJoin Us at NET@WORK2018 Featuring Debates on Migration, Foreign Policy, Populism & Disinformation
  8. European Jewish CongressKantor Center Annual Report on Antisemitism Worldwide - The Year the Mask Came Off
  9. UNICEFCalls for the Protection of Children in the Gaza Strip
  10. Mission of China to the EUForeign Minister Wang Yi Highlights Importance of China-EU Relations
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersImmigration and Integration in the Nordic Region - Getting the Facts Straight
  12. Macedonian Human Rights MovementMacedonians in Bulgaria Demand to End the Anti-Macedonian Name Negotiations

Latest News

  1. Secrecy of VW fraud report 'unacceptable', says MEP
  2. 'Strong suspicion' of corruption in Council of Europe assembly
  3. France tightens immigration law, sparking division
  4. ECJ ruling set to end 10-year 'mouth tobacco' lobbying saga
  5. Whistleblowers, Syria and digital revolution This WEEK
  6. MEP friendship groups offer 'backdoor' for pariah regimes
  7. Macron and Merkel pledge euro reform
  8. Obscurity surrounds EU military fund's expert groups

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Counter BalanceThe EIB Needs to Lead by Example on Tax Justice
  2. ILGA EuropeTrans People in Sweden to be Paid Compensation for Forced Sterilisation
  3. International Partnership for Human RightsThe Danger of Standing Up for Justice and Rights in Central Asia
  4. Mission of China to the EUChina and EU Must Work Together to Promote Global Steel Sector
  5. Swedish EnterprisesEU Tax Proposal on Digital Services Causes Concern for Small Exporting Economies
  6. European Jewish CongressCondemns the Horrific Murder of Holocaust Survivor Mireille Knoll in Paris
  7. Mission of China to the EUAn Open China Will Foster a World-Class Business Environment
  8. ECR GroupAn Opportunity to Help Shape a Better Future for Europe
  9. Counter BalanceControversial Turkish Azerbaijani Gas Pipeline Gets Major EU Loan
  10. World VisionSyria’s Children ‘At Risk of Never Fully Recovering', New Study Finds
  11. Macedonian Human Rights MovementMeets with US Congress Member to Denounce Anti-Macedonian Name Negotiations
  12. Martens CentreEuropean Defence Union: Time to Aim High?