• Germany's news in English

Merkel urges European Parliament to ok budget

The Local · 21 Feb 2013, 11:40

Published: 21 Feb 2013 11:40 GMT+01:00

Briefing the Bundestag lower house of parliament on the results of the last EU summit earlier this month, Merkel said the deal struck on the 2014-2020 budget "could not be praised highly enough."

Following talks that went through the night and lasted a full 24 hours in all, EU leaders at a February 7 and 8 summit in Brussels agreed the first-ever cut in the bloc's spending for its seven-year budget.

The deal has yet to pass a significant hurdle, however, in the shape of the European Parliament, which must give its final say.

The heads of the four largest groups in the European Parliament, which is to vote on the budget in July, have said they could not accept it in its current form as it would not help boost the struggling EU economy.

Merkel said: "I know there will be hard discussions with the parliament. That is natural."

"However, I think we would be well advised not to focus on what divides us, but to concentrate on what brings the council and parliament together," she added, referring to the European Council of EU leaders.

Under the accord, 2014-20 actual spending, or "payments" in EU jargon, was set at €908.4 billion ($1.2 trillion), with an absolute ceiling of €960 billion for spending "commitments" to the budget.

That amounts to just one percent of the EU's gross domestic product (GDP) and is a cut of around three percent from the budget of the previous seven-year period.

Story continues below…

"Let me say this quite clearly: no-one in Europe... would have been able to understand it if we had said that everyone in Europe has to save, only Europe itself does not," said Merkel to loud applause.


The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

11:58 February 21, 2013 by Englishted
I agree we need a program to create growth with unemployment at nearly 30% in Greece and high everywhere (including Germany if they didn't cook the books).

However with the E.U. record on waste and high wages I don't see them as the ones to implement it.

Their idea of creating jobs is to expand ever eastwards and southwards thus creating jobs for themselves at the cost to the existing members of lower wages and more social spending on unemployment benefits.
Today's headlines
'We'll freeze Turkey talks' warns EU as arrests continue
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has launched a radical purge against anyone suspected of complicity in the coup attempt. Photo: DPA

As Turkish authorities on Friday widened their sweeping post-coup crackdown to the business sector, the European Union's enlargement commissioner implicitly warned that the bloc would freeze Turkey's accession talks if the crackdown violated the rule of law.

I’m ashamed of Germany’s refugee failure: Green leader
Cem Özdemir. Photo: DPA

The head of the Green Party has responded angrily to Angela Merkel’s speech on refugees on Friday, saying he feels “ashamed at Germany’s failure".

German satirists mock Erdogan (and his penis)
Photo: DPA

Tempting fate?

Huge pro-Erdogan rally puts strain on Turkish community
Erdogan supporters at a rally in 2014. Photo: DPA

Tens of thousands of supporters of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan plan to rally in Cologne on Sunday, as tensions over Turkey's failed coup have put German authorities on edge.

How the Berlin startup scene is wasting its potential
Photo: DPA

"The truth is, there really isn't a truly successful international Berlin startup."

Five years' jail for German darknet weapons dealer
Photo: DPA

He had sold weapons to known Isis-sympathizers and far-right extremists.

Prickly Bavarian calls out cops on hedgehogs' noisy sex
Photo: DPA

Caught in the act.

International or German state school - which one's best?
Photo: DPA

Deciding between sending your child to a German state school or a private international school isn't easy. Max Bringmann has experienced both.

13 mortifying mistakes German learners always make

Sure-fire ways to get off on the wrong foot in the German language.

Captain Schweinsteiger retires from international football
Bastian Schweinsteiger. Photo: DPA

He has won a World Cup with Die Mannschaft and captained them at Euro 2016. On Friday Bastian Schweinsteiger announced his retirement from the national team.

Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Enter if you dare: Berlin's best abandoned haunts
IN PICTURES: How Munich responded to shooting spree
10 rookie errors all Brits make when they arrive in Germany
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Bavaria train attack: Were police right to shoot to kill?
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
How to get German citizenship (or just stay forever)
Brexit will turn Berlin into 'Europe’s startup capital'
Six soothing day trips to escape the bustle of Berlin
'Germany needs to make UK come to its senses'
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Six odd things Germans do in the summer
These 10 little-known German towns are a must see
Sponsored Article
Health insurance for expats in Germany: a quick guide
How two gay dads cut through German red tape to start a family
Five things to know about guns in Germany
10 things you need to know before attending a German wedding
Eight weird habits you'll pick up living in Germany
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Six reasons 'super-cool' Berlin isn't all it's cracked up to be
Only one country likes getting naked on the beach more than Germany
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
23 ridiculously fascinating things you never knew about Berlin
8 German words that perfectly sum up your 20s
Can't make it past the door at Berlin's most famous club? Help is at hand
Business & Money
Why Frankfurt could steal London's crown as Europe's finance capital
6 surprising things I learned about Germany while editing The Local
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd