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Varga: Euro-zone Budget Financing Should Not Conflict with EU’s Long-term Interests

MTI-Hungary Today 2019.02.12.

The euro-zone budget must not be allowed to overlap with the European Union’s existing tools and goals, as this would further deepen regional gaps and hinder furtherance of the single market, Hungarian Finance Minister Mihály Varga said at a Eurogroup meeting in Brussels.

The finance ministry said in a statement on Monday that Varga had underlined the importance of the matter in order to argue that the euro-zone budget’s main elements within the EU budget must be decided unanimously at the level of the EU heads of state and government.

Varga noted that EU leaders decided to create a budget for the euro area last December. Within the EU’s seven-year budget framework, an instrument is being set up to strengthen the euro area’s competitiveness and convergence.

In the course of negotiations, Hungary insists that the new instrument should indeed be set up within the multiannual financial framework so that a decision is only taken on the basis of a full EU27 consensus, accounting for the interests of member states outside the euro area, Varga said.

Varga argued that euro-zone budget resources can only be seen in addition to the resources of existing EU policies and programmes, either by increasing the amount of the multiannual financial framework or by adding extra income to be paid by the euro-area member states, the ministry’s statement said.