EU commission demands extra €4 billion for 2013 budget
By Benjamin Fox
The EU needs an extra €3.9 billion if it is to pay its bills in 2013, the bloc’s budget chief announced on Wednesday (25 September).
The demand for extra money, which comes just months after MEPs and ministers agreed to provide a further €7.3 billion to the original budget, is based on information submitted by governments estimating how much money will be needed to cover payments related to cohesion policy.
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In a statement on Wednesday (25 September), EU budget commissioner Janusz Lewandowski said that the figures vindicated the European Commission’s demands for more resources.
“Time and again ... I have warned that the voted EU budgets are well below the legitimate claims of EU beneficiaries,” he said, adding that the claims by governments “clearly show that we need additional funds to meet our legal obligations."
The commission proposal, which would amend the 2013 settlement, is the latest act in a protracted battle between the EU institutions on the bloc's spending.
Earlier this year, MEPs stated that they would refuse to ratify the next seven year budget framework, which starts in 2014, unless all outstanding bills from 2013 had been paid.
The EU executive requested an extra €11 billion in March, with Lewandowski insisting that otherwise the EU executive would run out of money before the end of the year.
However, governments would only agree to an additional €7.3 billion. Some €3.1 billion of the new money is needed to repay bills sent by national governments for infrastructure projects.
If approved by MEPs and ministers, the revised EU budget for 2013 would be worth €144.5 billion.