MEPs deplore delay of proposals for new sources of income for EU

Photo: EPA EU Budget Comissionner Johannes Hahn

Budget MEPs said on Tuesday that the European Commission is in breach of the 2020 Interinstitutional Agreement which prescribes proposing three new EU sources of income by June 2021, EP Press service reported.

In a debate on Tuesday with Members of Parliament’s Committee on Budgets, Commissioner for Budget Johannes Hahn, said that the Commission had put on hold its work on a new digital levy as a new Own Resource for the Union budget (and as a consequence delaying the package including 2 other new Own Resources) in the aftermath of a long-awaited agreement on OECD/G20 level on the reform of international taxation in July, which should be finalised by October.

“Parliament was disappointed when the Commission failed to present legislative proposals for new Own Resources in the first half of the year. The digital levy in the meantime has been put on ice because of the OECD negotiations and under some not too subtle pressure from the United States”, the Chair of the Committee on Budgets Johan Van Overtveldt said.

Commission was under legal obligation to submit proposals by June. A large majority of MEPs found that the Commission is in breach of the Interinstitutional Agreement of December 2020, which contains a legally binding roadmap towards the introduction of new own resources, according to which the Commission must put forward, by June 2021, a proposal to introduce three new own resources: a carbon border adjustment mechanism (CBAM), a digital levy and an own resource based on a reviewed Emissions Trading System (ETS).

The protection of the EU budget is at stake, said the MEPs, underlining that without new Own Resources there are not sufficient funds to repay the borrowing for the “NextGenerationEU” recovery plan without increasing national contributions to the EU budget or at worst, cutting future EU budgets. They insisted that the Commission should not be a hostage of OECD/G20 negotiations.

Commissioner Hahn promised the MEPs that “after the G20 meeting in October we will make a proposal no matter if there is an agreement or not”. He confirmed that the whole package of three new Own Resources is needed in order to generate sufficient funds.

 

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