EU leaders are meeting on February 7-8 in another attempt to reach agreement on a long-term budget after a failed summit in November, 2012.
A proposal made then by European Council president Herman Van Rompuy included expenditures totaling €972 billion over the next seven years (2014-2020).
That figure, which is roughly the same amount as the expenditures projected for the current 2007-2013 budget period (€975 billion), was deemed by some EU net payers as too high. The strongest opponents of the current proposal are the United Kingdom and Germany, who want to cut expenditures by €30 billion in the next budget.
According to AFP, which cites unnamed sources close to the negotiation process, the next summit will begin with Mr Van Rompuy’s November budget proposal. But the European Council president is open to cuts. The Irish Minister of State for European Affairs, Lucinda Creighton, said in an interview that she believes the EU will agree to cuts within the €15-20 billion range.
Janusz Lewandowski, the EU’s budget commissioner, said, “It’s a responsibility issue. Nobody will understand if Europe disagrees on sums amounting to 0.1 percent of the EU’s GDP. As a Nobel Peace Prize winner, it should be able to guarantee itself financial stability for the next seven years.”
Poland itself is satisfied with the Van Rompuy proposal. It would award Poland €72.4 billion over the next seven years, compared to the roughly €68 billion it received in the current EU budget.
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