Tuesday

14th Jul 2020

EU budget a step closer after €2.7bn deal

  • Schulz (l) on Monday: Backed Barroso, amid growing ill will from the Council (Photo: europarl.europa.eu)

Lawmakers have moved a step closer to a deal on future EU spending, despite growing ill will among institutions.

The Lithuanian EU presidency, which is brokering the talks, said late on Monday (21 October) that EU countries agreed to give the European Commission an extra €2.7 billion for 2013.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

The European Parliament responded by calling a snap meeting of its budgetary affairs committee on Tuesday, with a view to voting through the funds on Thursday.

For his part, parliament chief Martin Schulz said he had been contacted by European Commission head Jose Manuel Barroso, who warned him of the need for a quick decision.

“By mid-November the commission will no longer be in a position to shoulder its financial obligations," Schulz told MEPs in his opening address to this week's session in Strasbourg.

He added that he is “bound to take it [Barroso's warning] seriously."

The commission says the budget shortfall is due to a 20 percent drop in its revenue from EU countries' customs duties.

It has tabled nine separate "amending budgets" this year totalling over €15 billion.

The €2.7 billion drama is part of wider talks on EU spending for 2013, 2014 and for the 2014-to-2020 budget.

An official from the EU Council, which represents EU member states in Brussels, said Barroso's top-ups have created "a tense atmosphere" in the EU capital.

MEPs were originally expected to vote on the 2014-to-2020 budget in Strasbourg this week.

But the vote was postponed because MEPs first want member states to approve a separate top-up request for 2013, worth €3.9 billion.

"We don't want to go to war with the parliament," the Council source said.

He noted that "time is really pressing" and that "we could be in a mess if we can't resolve this" quickly.

But he added that crisis-hit countries' chancelleries are unlikely to approve extra funds for EU activity in the current economic climate.

"The figures for the MFF [multi-annual financial framework] will not change and everybody knows this," he said.

Deal on longterm EU budget after last-minute talks

EU negotiators Thursday reached a last-minute political agreement on the 2014-2020 budget, sparing the EU the embarrassing prospect of hosting a jobs-focused summit without being able to commit money to fighting unemployment.

EU must do 'more with less' in 2015

Europe will have to do more with less, the bloc’s budget commissioner said as he unveiled the EU’s spending plans for 2015.

News in Brief

  1. Catalan politician accuses Spanish state of espionage
  2. EU ministers clash with Turkey over Hagia Sophia and drilling
  3. Study: EU recovery package falls short on green investment
  4. WHO: no return to normal for foreseeable future
  5. Macron wants a stronger EU in the Mediterranean
  6. Croatia opens for US tourists, defying EU ban
  7. Poll: only 61% of Germans would get Covid-19 vaccine
  8. UK to spend €788m on new UK-EU border control system

Agenda

EU 'in-person' summit plus key data privacy ruling This WEEK

EU leaders will meet in Brussels on Friday and Saturday to discuss in person the EU's long-term budget and recovery plan to respond to the crisis. Meanwhile, the future of the EU-US Privacy Shield might depend on this week's ruling.

Opinion

Let's have positive discrimination for EU stagiaires

We call for applying positive discrimination to the 'Blue Book'. This would imply quotas to ensure the recruitment of people of colour including those from non-privileged backgrounds.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. UNESDANext generation Europe should be green and circular
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersNEW REPORT: Eight in ten people are concerned about climate change
  3. UNESDAHow reducing sugar and calories in soft drinks makes the healthier choice the easy choice
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersGreen energy to power Nordic start after Covid-19
  5. European Sustainable Energy WeekThis year’s EU Sustainable Energy Week (EUSEW) will be held digitally!
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic states are fighting to protect gender equality during corona crisis

Latest News

  1. EU prepares response to China over Hong Kong
  2. EU to keep corporate sponsorship of presidencies
  3. 'Passengers' became 'lenders' to airlines hit by pandemic
  4. Green NGOs demand EU dumps controversial energy treaty
  5. EU Parliament considers streamlining rule-of-law tools
  6. Italy has a responsibility, too
  7. Poland's EU-battles to continue as Duda wins tight vote
  8. EU 'in-person' summit plus key data privacy ruling This WEEK

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us