Parliament and Council resolve enlargement budget row

The European Parliament and the Council have
reached an agreement on resolving the dispute over the
financing of enlargement. The agreement clears the way for the
Parliament’s approval of the EU Accession Treaty with 10 future
Member States on 9 April.

On 8 April, the Parliament's Committee on Budgets endorsed
the agreement with the Council on the adjustment of the
EU's Financial Perspective running up to 2006 by 540
million euro. 25 MEPs voted in favour, and 12 voted
against. The Parliament originally insisted on a 600
million euro increase of the budget for internal policies
in favour of the future Member States. The compromise
resolves the row over Annex XV from the Treaty, which
encroaches on the Parliament's rights to co-decision in
budgetary matters by fixing the budget for the future
Member States.

Under the agreement, a joint declaration
by the Council, the European Parliament and the European
Commission will ensure their respect for the
interinstitutional agreement of May 1999 on budgetary
discipline. The declaration will be incorporated into the
Parliament's report on the adjustment of financial
perspectives, adopted by the Committee on Budgets on 8
April. The report is to be adopted by the Parliament in the
plenary session on 9 April, before the MEPs give their
assent to the Accession Treaty.


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