Yesterday evening the economic and monetary committee (ECON) of the European Parliament voted its position on the 2018 EU budget. While the monetary changes for budget lines were carried with a large majority, the committee postponed the vote on the text of the compromise were postponed as the negotiations of two compromises were not yet finally completed. The Council had proposed to cut the budget of many key institutions and programmes of economic cooperation in Europe including EBA, EIOPA and ESMA as well as Eurostat and the tax cooperation programme FISCALIS. Amendments from Conservatives, social democrates and Greens thought to undo these cuts and were all carried with large majorities. They have still to be confirmed by a vote in the budget committee and the plenary.
MEP Sven Giegold, financial and economic policy spokesperson of the Greens/EFA group and shadow rapporteur commented:
This is a clear stop sign for the member states which have proposed to cut the budget of the EU’s financial watch dogs without any justification. Equally the Parliamentarians voted against cuts in economic governance and tax cooperation between member states. It is a shame that member states do not prioritise economic cooperation and financial supervision but repeat the mistakes which led to the banking crisis.
We are pleased that a part of the budget for the International Accounting Standard Board will be put into reserve. The IASB has ignored demands of the European parliament to take democracy, accountability and long term financing more seriously. The EU cannot accept to finance a significant part of the budget of the IASB but is ignored when it comes to key governance decisions.
The left group lost a number votes to empty completely the budget of the financial watchdogs. They also suggested to create a programme for exiting the Euro. This has demonstrated the euroskeptic position of GUE/NGL.