Agnieszka Pomaska

Conciliation Committee on the drafting of the EU budget

On 8th November, the Conciliation Committee of the Council of the EU and the EP met to work out a compromise draft of the EU budget for 2012.

The inaugural meeting of the Conciliation Committee of the EU Council and the European Parliament took place at the EP. The Committee has three weeks to work out a compromise draft of the EU budget for 2012.

Following the earlier opinions expressed by the Council (in July) and the Parliament (in October), the current conciliation procedure is due to end in mid-November.

The meeting was co-chaired by the President of the European Parliament Jerzy Buzek and the President of the Committee on Budgets Alain Lamassoure, both representing the EP, and by the Undersecretary of State at the Polish Ministry of Finance Jacek Dominik, representing the Council. The European Commission was represented by Mr. Janusz Lewandowski, the Commissioner for Financial Programming and Budget.

In their addresses the Chairs of the Conciliation Committee stressed the need for a swift compromise that would take into account the efforts made by Member States to consolidate their public finances. They also stated that the announcement of a quick compromise would provide a much needed positive signal for European citizens and the financial markets.

The European Parliament’s top priorities include the Europe 2020 Strategy and the EU’s external relations. Mr. Jacek Dominik pointed out that the Council did not question these priorities, but stressed a need for the strict planning of next year’s spending that would be based on current performance, as well as the need for a rational estimation of needs, especially in terms of payments.

If the negotiations are successful then both the Council and the Parliament will finally adopt the EU 2012 budget till the beginning of December.