05 Sep 2014
EU’s 2015 BUDGETBrussels Daily
EU’s 2015 budget: European Parliament committees determine their positions
The EU’s budget for next year is taking shape with the Parliament and the Council working hard to find an acceptable compromise on the level and breakdown of EU revenue and spending in the months ahead. This week many parliamentary committees adopted their opinions on the budget and the Council also approved its formal position. Check out our infographic about the steps in the procedure and read on to find out more about what follows.
The budgets committee is responsible for preparing the Parliament’s position on the budget. For this it will need feedback on specific programmes and sectors from other parliamentary committees. Most of them will have adopted their opinions by the end of next week. The plenary vote on the budget is scheduled for late October.
The Council adopted its formal position on the budget on 2 September. Compared to the Commission’s draft proposal, EU governments decided on a cut of €522 million in commitments to €145.08 billion and a reduction of €2.1 billion in payments to €140 billion. Commitments are the contractual obligations that may span more than one year, while payments are the expenditure foreseen to be made in the next 12-month period.
The Parliament will have to decide in October whether it wishes to make changes to the numbers approved by the Council. If it does so, MEPs will have to enter into negotiations with representatives of the national governments in order to seek an agreement before the end of the year.
Eider Gardiazaba, a Spanish member of the S&D group, is responsible for steering the Commission budget through the Parliament. In discussions in the budgets committee on 3 September, she said the Parliament would insist on securing investment in strategic sectors that would help lift the economy out of the crisis and also on adequate levels of budgeted payments. The Parliament has been concerned in recent years about payment shortfalls in the EU budget.