Vote sets the seal on Cameron's EU budget deal

19-Nov-2013 @ 16:0

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Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

The European Parliament finally agreed the EU's long-termbudget today after months of wrangling.

The broad deal is the same one driven through with fellowleaders by David Cameron in Brussels last February, and Conservative MEPs todaywelcomed the final settlement of the spending blueprint which will take the EUthrough to 2020.

After MEPs put their seal on the agreement in a vote inStrasbourg, Richard Ashworth MEP, Conservative negotiator, said: "We havebeen four square Behind David Cameron's deal from day one and we have made itstick. It is the first ever cut in the EU's long-term budget and we haveprotected the British rebate, worth £3 billion a year.

"We have also seen off attempts for the EU to giveitself new tax-raising powers, including the menace of the FinancialTransactions Tax.

"We have secured greater focus on important researchand development budgets which will drive recovery.

"Attempts by some MEPs renegotiate the Cameron dealhave failed.

"This is a major step forward, but the need remainsfor wholesale reform of the budget process, to deliver truly forward-lookinginvestment budgets in future."

The deal reached contains the following elements (in 2011prices):

• Commitment appropriation ceiling set at €960bn/£812bnor 1% GNI (a €15bn/£13bn cut from the current level and an €85bn/£72bn cut fromthe Commission proposal), this is a 3.4% cut on the current framework.

• The payment appropriation (actual cash) ceilingis set at €908bn/£768bn or 0.95% GNI (a €17.176bn/£14.56bn cut from the currentlevel and €79.2bn/£67bn cut from the Commission proposal), this is a 3.7% cuton the current framework. This is the lowest ever % since multiannualbudgets were introduced in 1993 and the first time that the EU budget has beencut.

• UK keeps its rebate in its current form (worth up to£20bn in the next MFF).

• No new own resources for the duration of the new MFF,the FTT and new VAT proposals from the Commission will therefore not be adoptedto fund the EU budget.

• The deal sees more money going to new Member States(rather than simply being recycled among richer Member States) and aconcentration of funds in those areas which add value, such as a 34% increase inthe funds devoted to research and development.

• These proposals would save the UK taxpayer roughly€600m/£500m a year.

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