The EU Budget 2014 Ready on Time

Written by | Tuesday, November 19th, 2013
M. Guillermo Guttierrez

The budget committee of the European Parliament approved the EU’s budget for the 2014-2020 period after last obstacles had been overcome. Now, the law on budget is ready for a vote in plenary so that it could enter into force on January 1, 2014.
The budget law was approved by 28 votes to five and, except for the simple budget for 2014-2020, it includes also the so-called multi-annual financial framework (MFF) and long-term budget. The MFF along with its institutional arrangements are meant to go to plenary on Tuesday, 19 November, while the 2013 budget will be voted on 20 November. In both of the votes, a majority plus one vote is required. According to the agreement on the budget, the deal encompasses the establishment of a high-profile working group in charge of innovating the management of the EU’s “own resources” income.
The European Parliament said that the MMF, which was initially agreed on already in June this year, included the key priorities such as flexibility regarding payment or broad appropriations. The flexibility should reportedly ensure that every single euro cent in the budget is spent where it is needed the most, which is of high importance especially during the economic crisis. The MFF also includes the so-called “revision clause” enabling the upcoming Parliament to decide on amending priorities and budget allocation according to these priorities.
According to Belgium’s MEP Jean-Luc Dehaene, the Parliament envisaged the budget to be a forward-looking investment fund for job creation and economic growth in that it will invest money in sectors where it is needed the most. Mr. Dehaeune added that any further delay in voting on MFF and related laws could undermine the continuity of many EU-funded programs, which would be politically irresponsible. Generally speaking, most observers agree that the EU budget is very likely to be ready for use by member countries and EU institutional bodies in January 2014 without a delay.

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