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The European Parliament regrets that the Council is taking the multiannual financial framework hostage

Following the June political agreement on the 2014-2020 Multiannual Financial Framework, ALDE accepted a lower budget forecast than for the previous period on two main conditions: first, that the outstanding bills be paid so that they do not fall under the next budget period, and secondly, that a high-level group on own resources be formed prior to the Parliament's assent on the MFF. It is clear that these conditions are still not fully met and the Parliamentary Budget Committee has decided today to postpone its vote on the MFF, without prejudice to the vote in plenary session.

Guy Verhofstadt, ALDE group leader, said: "I'm tired of the Council's bluffing game which has been going on for months on the critical issues of the European Union's budget, which certainly deserve a more coherent policy. I am particularly concerned about the failure of the Council to quickly open the discussion on own resources, when it is the current system of national contributions which is causing many of the difficulties we have in establishing a credible and effective budget. "

Anne Jensen (Venstre, Denmark), ALDE spokesperson on the MFF, added: "The Council has conditioned its approval of the 2013 principal amending budget to our own approval of the MFF. This attempt to force our hand is against the political agreement reached in June. The amending budget will meet expenditures that the Council itself has committed to, and which we refuse to carry over to subsequent budgets. We will vote all of these amending budgets because we know that regions and companies are counting on those funds. "

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