EU budget agreement "not there yet" - Hollande

PARIS Mon Feb 4, 2013 8:17am IST

France's President Francois Hollande (R) and Italy's Prime Minister Mario Monti walk together in the courtyard at the Elysee Palace after their meeting in Paris, February 3, 2013.

France's President Francois Hollande (R) and Italy's Prime Minister Mario Monti walk together in the courtyard at the Elysee Palace after their meeting in Paris, February 3, 2013.

Related Topics

PARIS (Reuters) - President Francois Hollande said on Sunday France was keen to agree the European Union's 2014-2020 budget at a summit in Brussels next week, but there was still much work to be done.

The 27-nation bloc failed to agree on its 1 trillion euro budget at a meeting in November.

"We will do everything to find an agreement at the next summit, but conditions are not there yet," Hollande told reporters, flanked by Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti.

Hollande said there was still time to reach a deal before the summit starts on Thursday.

Monti said he hoped a deal could be found on the basis of a package that European governments discussed late last year.

"I hope that the system that will follow will be fairer," Monti said.

Monti wants a reform of the EU system of rebates, arguing that Italy's contribution to the budget is out of proportion to its real wealth. Some net contributors, such as Britain, have demanded deep reductions in EU spending plans.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has urged her EU partners on to work together to get a deal.

Hollande also voiced concern about recent strengthening of the euro against the currencies of major trading partners.

"The markets have welcomed with magnitude, with excess, via the level of the euro, the confidence they place in the countries that make up the (euro) zone," he said.

The euro last week reached its highest level in 14 months against the dollar and in 33 months against the yen.

A strengthening euro would weigh on exports from euro-zone countries, as well as reducing the cost of imports.

(Reporting by Elizabeth Pineau; Writing by Elena Berton; Editing by Robin Pomeroy and Jason Webb)

FILED UNDER:
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Markets

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Segway in India

Segway in India

Segway’s India business pegs hope on tech-savvy Modi  Full Article 

Power Outage

Power Outage

Mumbai hit by power cuts  Full Article 

Commodities

Commodities

Gold imports, premiums to jump on festive demand - top refiner  Full Article 

Economic Worries

Economic Worries

Pakistan's promises to IMF in doubt as protests sap economy   Full Article 

Islamic Finance

Islamic Finance

Basel III deposit challenge looms over Islamic banks   Full Article 

Antitrust Probes

Antitrust Probes

U.S. business lobby says concerned China antitrust probes unfair.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage