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The Knowledge-Sharing Platform

18 Jul 2014

European Parliament warns budget problems may jeopardise EU programmes

In the European Parliament's debate on 16 July 2014, MEPs insisted that the EU must stop rolling over its growing portfolio of unpaid bills from one year to the next, given the alarming shortage of funds for payments due in 2014. Both the Commission and many MEPs warned that unless a satisfactory solution is found, programmes such as Erasmus+, research projects and humanitarian aid will get stuck, new programmes and projects may be grounded, and beneficiaries may have to wait for money they worked for.

As in 2011 and 2012, due to funding shortages the Commission was not in a position to pay all its bills in 2013, thus many bills were rolled over to 2014, thereby rapidly increasing the amount of overdue payments to over €23 billion. This year, funds are running out even earlier than last year, and EU programmes are in jeopardy, the Commission warned.

MEPs criticised the Council for cutting payment budgets in recent years, even though payments are needed to meet the Council's own previous commitments. Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou urged the Council and Parliament to find an agreement.

The Council will adopt its formal position on the draft budget for 2015 in early September, and the European Parliament will state its position on the Council’s amendments on 6-7 October 2014.

For more information. please refer to the EP's press release:

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