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Monday, 15 November 2010

EP team "disappointed" as negotiations on EU budget are suspended

Negotiations between the European Parliament and the Council on next year's budget were suspended on  November 11Tfter a minority of member states proved unwilling to agree to discussing the way future EU budgets should be financed. In a reaction, EP President Jerzy Buzek said that "Differences still exist between the European Parliament on one side and the Council on the other. Parliament is ready to accept the modest increase in payments in next year's budget as proposed by Council. We are not asking for one euro more on condition that our political expectations are met. I am confident that we will manage to iron out these differences in following meetings." Buzek is leading the European Parliament delegation for the budget negotiations."The Parliament is ready to have a deal on figures if there is an agreement on our political demands. We do not want to change the Treaty, we want a serious agreement on how we will work together in the future on EU financing including a new system of own resources, which could be the best way to reduce national contributions to the EU budget. The EP wants to have clear guarantees that next budgets will be put together in a serious and rigorous way. We need to put more order in European finances," Mr Buzek added. Alain Lamassoure, chair of the Budgets Committee, was disappointed that a minority of Member States blocked the negotiations on Thursday: "In order to finish negotiations, you have to start them first. In spite of the Belgian presidency's efforts, in spite of the agreement of a large majority of governments, some ten countries refused any negotiations. In the talks on the EU 2011 budget, Parliament isn't asking for a single euro more than the Council. Parliament is not asking for a Treaty change. We are proposing a political agreement on working together to avoid future budgetary crises and to ensure sustainable financing for future policies. Today's failure confirms what everyone already knew: how difficult it is for states to finance future policies in a sustainable manner. Last year everyone tried to spend as much as possible in an attempt to support economic activity. This year, everyone is trying to spend as little as possible in an attempt to fight the debt crisis?""This failure shows very clearly the deep division between European countries regarding the financing of common policies which all have agreed to. All states want to profit from the European budget, but some richer states do not want to pay for policies which benefit their neighbours as well. This is incomprehensible, this refusal to work towards safeguarding the future of Europe as well as the solidarity between the European countries."Talks are expected to be resumed on Monday 15 November.

Source: European Parliament