Central Europe's new EU member states demanding "fair" EU budget proposal

Photo: European Commission

Britain currently holds the European Presidency of the EU and is trying to get agreement on a budget for the years 2007 to 2013. But less than a week before the end-of year summit, agreement is a long way off.

Photo: European Commission
A proposal to cut funds previously promised to the newer EU member states have not gone down well in capitals like Warsaw, Prague, Bratislava or Budapest. To get the Hungarian line on the budget proposals Radio Budapest spoke to Andras Barsony, State Secretary in the Hungarian Foreign Ministry:

"The proposal which would be welcomed by Hungary and the other so-called new member states is the fair distribution of contributions and subsidies."

So what could be the next step towards accepting a budget?

"The next step? Maybe if we went back to the Luxembourg proposals. This would be acceptable for us. If it isn't acceptable to the British government, which blocked it last May, then we should think about smaller contributions from the big countries. But at the same time, the portion taken out of the cohesion funds for the new member countries, including Hungary, should remain unchanged. This is not a move in support of the new member states, it would simply be a fair share."