GUE/NGL MEPs on the European Parliament’s Committee on Budgets (BUDG) have expressed their deep disappointment after a deal on the EU Budget 2017 with the Council was agreed in the early hours of Thursday.

A total of €157.88 billion have been committed with payments set at €134.49 billion.  However, after 18 hours of talks, not nearly enough has been allocated to tackle the many challenges facing the EU.

Irish MEP and GUE/NGL coordinator on the BUDG committee, Liadh Ní Riada, was particularly damning of the agreement:

“The outcome of yesterday's Conciliation meeting was to say the least highly disappointing. Member states had few or no answers to the challenges facing the EU like economic stagnation, the plummeting social standards, Brexit, USA election results and the humanitarian crisis.”

“Support for boosting investments for the creation of employment, culture, education, health, fighting against climate change, regional development also fell well short of expectations,” she continued.

“The Nordic states, in particular, showed little solidarity by blocking more progressive decisions despite requests from MEPs.”

“Yes, member states bowed to our demands to re-start the Youth Employment Initiative as well as increasing the resources for programmes such as ERASMUS, COSME and Progress. But a much better outcome should have been possible – and easier to achieve. Instead, we mostly got postponements and deferrals,” Ní Riada reasoned.

The agreement will be submitted to the vote at the European Parliament's Plenary session on 1st December in Brussels.

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