Following the vote today in plenary and the adoption of the European Parliament negotiation position on the Budget 2019, general rapporteur and S&D MEP Daniele Viotti, stated:
"Moved by national selfishness and a ‘buck-passing’ attitude, once again the European Council is playing against Europe. The Council, meaning the member states, is increasingly adding priorities to the EU - just for the sake of passing the buck - whilst the blind selfishness of the national governments is not guaranteeing that adequate funds be allocated to EU common policies. This prevents the EU from delivering and finally from living up to citizens´ expectations. The combination of these two irresponsible approaches risks increasing disappointment, frustration and mistrust toward the EU, across Europe.
"This is exactly what is happening with the EU budget 2019, where, thanks to S&Ds pressure, the European Parliament has today demanded adequate funds for fundamental tools devoted to the future of our young people, whether they come from rural or urban areas. We are glad the plenary endorsed this, placing the Parliament as the frontrunner for a better budget, aligned with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, in the next negotiations with the Council.
"Unfortunately, selfishness and a buck-passing attitude is being prioritised in the case of the three billion euros the EU is providing to Turkey to ensure functional hosting facilities and human shelters for refugees. Now the Council wants to overturn the initial logic and limit its share to only one billion - divided amongst the 28 member states - passing the rest of the financial burden on the shoulders of the Communitarian budget. In so doing, the Council is actually trying to steal crucial funds to hand them over to Ankara when they were supposed to be allocated to EU common policies. This is not acceptable and it is even less acceptable if we consider the additional EU funding provided to Turkey for implementing political reforms in line with the Union acquis, an objective for which local authorities are performing negatively. It is even less acceptable if we consider Turkey’s deteriorating compliance to democracy, rule of law and human rights standards.
"The negotiations will be tough. We will be firm in defending European citizen’s rights and funds from the persistent selfishness and buck-passing put forward by the Council."