New Budget Plan Sets Stage For EU Summit Battle

New budget plan sets stage for EU summit battle

Brussels set the stage Friday for a fierce budget battle at next week's extraordinary EU summit, with a trillion-euro plan that meets no-one's demands

Brussels, (APP - UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 14th Feb, 2020 ) :Brussels set the stage Friday for a fierce budget battle at next week's extraordinary EU summit, with a trillion-euro plan that meets no-one's demands.

The summit's host, European Council president Charles Michel, is seeking a compromise to clear a path to agreement on a seven-year budget framework for the bloc.

But the already fraught process has become more difficult as Brussels tries to plug the multi-billion-euro hole left in its finances by Britain's Brexit divorce.

Initial reactions to the document in Brussels diplomatic circles suggested Thursday's summit will devolve into a fierce argument between member states that will likely end without agreement.

The richer mainly northern countries that are net contributors to EU programmes want to cap spending at around one percent of the union's total GDP.

But the main parties in the European Parliament have demanded 1.3 percent and have threatened to block any proposal they feel won't cover their ambitions.

For its part, the European Commission has proposed a budget of 1.11 percent of economic output to fund EU president Ursula von der Leyen's ambitious "Green Deal" agenda.

Von der Leyen has warned Britain's departure will leave the union short of 75 billion Euros ($82 billion) over the seven-year budget period, and she wants a quarter of that ring-fenced for the fight against climate change.

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