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Minister Fleming to participate in ECOFIN Budget Council and Conciliation Committee

Minister of State at the Department of Finance, Seán Fleming TD, will tomorrow represent Ireland at the ECOFIN Budget Council and at the Conciliation Committee with the European Parliament, which convenes in Brussels for the purposes of agreeing the EU’s annual budget for 2023. 

The 2023 budget forms part of the EU’s multiannual financial framework (MFF) for 2021-2027 which was agreed in 2020 and provides for targeted supports for key sectors and activities across EU member states including agriculture, rural development, research, education, infrastructure and many others.

Speaking ahead of the negotiations, Minister Fleming commented that:

“We need a good EU budget to play an important role in EU citizens’ lives. In my view, the Council’s (member state governments’) position on the budget will deliver for millions of people across the EU by investing in infrastructure, third level institutions and businesses.” 

“I and my ministerial colleagues are also conscious that our taxpayers’ money must be spent carefully and spent well. Our approach takes full account of the constraints on Member States’ finances, given the large increases in contributions in recent years and the very challenging economic environment for all of us.”

“I fully support the Czech EU Council Presidency in its efforts to negotiate an agreement with the Parliament for a sustainable budget that aligns fully with the Multiannual Financial Framework agreement.”

Negotiations on the annual EU budget for 2023 are entering the final phase and an agreement must be reached by midnight on Monday, 14 November at the latest. If agreement is not reached at that point, the European Commission will be required to present a new draft budget, with the risk of no agreement, which would have adverse implications for the funding of the Union for 2023.

The 2023 budget-setting process commenced in June with the publication of the European Commission’s proposal for Draft Budget 2023, which was subsequently reinforced by  an Amending Letter in early October. The Council and European Parliament have published their respective positions in relation to the draft budget in advance of the negotiation. 

In line with the provisions of the EU Treaties, a Conciliation period began on 25 October and several trilogues at political and technical level have taken place to further budget negotiations; however, the majority of key decisions will be taken at the ECOFIN Budget Council and Conciliation Committee.