Distances in Brussels are not only geographic

Published: 07 December 2010


Distances in Brussels are not very large at all. However, the nature of the discussions held these days in the European capital could not differ more.

Whereas in the centre of the European capital the debate focuses on international development cooperation, in the so called Brussels-bubble the EC and the EP cannot find a common position on the EU money.

The European Union has been without a budget for 2011 since the Twenty and the European Parliament failed in their negotiations in mid-November. The lack of agreement calls for the continuation of the 2010 accounts for at least the early months of next year. A minority of states lead by the UK and The Netherlands reject demands of the EP to rise the EU budget by 6.18% and askto limit to 2.9%, in line with the austerity measures that Member States  have adopted to address the debt crisis.

However, the lock on the EU 2011 budget could be close to be solved. After last negotiations held yesterday official sources indicated that the EP may have finally backtracked on its demands and agreed with the Member States to moderate the increase in the EU accounts, which would amount 90 million euros.

If this scenario of budget dicrease could set aside funds to the European External Action Service or a new financial supervisory authorities, one cannot help but wondering what is the impact it will have on the EU development policies.