Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2003-05-13-Speech-2-161"

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"Mr President, I just want to raise two points: one concerns the extra money in category 3 that we negotiated with the Council at the last Conciliation Committee meeting concerning the deal at Copenhagen, mainly concerned with the codecision procedures. I would like to remind the other committees that what we are trying to do, or at least what we and the Commission are trying to do is to ensure a legislative proposal is presented to Parliament and to the Council this year, hopefully between July and September, so that we can actually enshrine in legislation the amounts needed between now and the end of 2006. That of course means the committees which are involved in codecision reacting rather swiftly to make sure that we have that information so that we can make sure that this budget is complete. This is because what we want to do is to have a trialogue and a conciliation meeting with the Council in July to formalise this, not just for the 2004 budget, but also for the other two budgets. The other point I want to make concerns the format in which the budget is now presented. This is the new ABB format which Parliament asked for and insisted upon and which the Commission has now presented. The trouble is we do not know how to use it. We had a presentation last year to inform everyone, which we all conveniently forgot, and have had another presentation this year, but now we have the reality of the situation. We have actually seen the documents in their real true-life format, which means that we do not know how to make amendments to them. The fact that we work to financial perspectives within different categories or with different categories means that if we use the ABB system we will not know what the ceilings are within the different categories. So in the next 20 minutes, when we meet as the Committee on Budgets, Members – because we are simple souls after all – will have the new budget presented in two formats: one in the ABB which we have insisted upon, and one in the old format which we can understand. What we have to decide, when it comes to the votes later in the year, is how we are going to vote. This is an important issue and I want to thank the Commission for presenting the budget in the new format, whatever problems we have with it. I am sure it will give a lot more transparency and enable a lot more understanding in the long run. When we have a new financial perspective – who knows – it may even be in line with the ABB format of budgeting. Who knows?!"@en1

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