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Settle bills, invest more for growth and jobs: Parliament’s position on the EU budget for 2015

Plenary Session Press release - Budget22-10-2014 - 13:51
 

European Union member states must back their political pledges with money to revive growth, create jobs, encourage research and development, and enable the EU to do its foreign policy job, said MEPs as they reversed the Council's cuts in the draft EU budget for 2015 on Wednesday. An agreement on additional funds for 2014 is a prerequisite for Parliament to do a deal on next year's budget with Council, MEPs added.


Parliament raised commitment appropriations to €146,380.9 million and payment appropriations to €146,416.5 million for 2015. The Parliament's position on the draft budget was approved by 464 votes to 186, with 46 abstentions.


ˮWith only 1% of EU GNI, the EU budget can give a push to national budgets and encourage growth and employment. Our priorities are the same as those of the Council, but the Council does not want to finance themˮ, said Ms Eider Gardiazábal (S&D, ES), the main rapporteur on the 2015 budget, during the debate.


Growth, jobs, SMEs, education, farmers


Parliament as a whole reversed all the cuts made by member states in the Commission’s original proposal and requested extra funding to boost economic growth and job creation, as recommended by its Budgets Committee.


Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), research programmes and education, including the student exchange programme Erasmus+, should receive €190.5 million more,  MEPs said.


Financial oversight agencies, farmers and fishermen hit by Russia's embargo on their exports, and the EU's aid fund for its most deprived citizens should also get more (an extra €6.1 million, €35 million and €16.7 million respectively), said Parliament.


Foreign role


Similarly, they voted more €400 million more than was originally proposed by the Commission for the EU to fulfil its international responsibilities, inter alia to,Syrian refugees, Ukraine and Palestine.


Serious shortfall in payments funding


To pay bills from local authorities, small enterprises and other beneficiaries in 2014, the European Commission has been forced to request additional funds in the form of draft amending budgets (DABs).



ˮWe have to have an agreement on DABs before negotiations on budget 2015 can start with Council: this is a position unanimously supported by all political groups,ˮ stated rapporteur Gérard Deprez (ALDE, BE) in a separate debate on Tuesday.


To halt the growth of the payment gap gaining volume since 2010 to €25 billion at the end of 2014, the Parliament voted for a €4 billion payments top up for 2015.


Next steps


On 28 October, three weeks of “conciliation” talks with the Council will start with the aim of agreeing a Council/ Parliament deal by 17 November. Next year's budget is set to be voted by Parliament and signed by its President on 26 November.

REF. : 20141016IPR74260
Updated: ( 22-10-2014 - 15:45)
 
 
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