EP Plenary says more funds needed for growth, jobs, security and climate change in EU 2018 budget
The European Parliament (EP) at its plenary session on 25 October 2017 agreed on its budgetary resolution for the 2018 EU budget. According to the EP, the overall EU budget for 2018 should be €162.6 billion (+1.2% on the Commission’s draft budget) for commitments and €146.7 billion (+0.9%) for payments.
In this resolution, MEPs also reaffirm their commitment “to financing Union policies that enhance jobs and growth in all its regions through investments in research, education, infrastructure, SMEs and employment, in particular among young people.” They nonetheless stress that they fail “to understand how the Union can achieve progress in these fields considering the cuts proposed by the Council (…).” With regard to research and growth, the resolution rejects the Council’s “unjustified €750 million cuts” in the “growth and jobs” area, warning that such cuts “would jeopardize programmes with real European added value and a direct impact on job and growth creation, such as Horizon 2020 or the Connecting Europe Facility.” The EP wishes to reinforce, on top of the Commission’s budget proposal, “those programmes that are key to boosting growth and jobs and that reflect widely agreed Union priorities, namely Erasmus+, Horizon 2020 (Marie Curie, European Research Council, SME Instrument), COSME, and EaSI (Progress and Eures).”
The resolution on Parliament’s position on the EU's budget for 2018 was approved by 414 votes to 163, with 90 abstentions. The plenary vote is now followed by 21 days of conciliation talks with the Council, with the aim of reaching a deal between the two institutions in time for next year's budget to be voted on by Parliament and signed by its President on 30 November 2017.