HC Deb 21 December 1988 vol 144 cc273-5W
Mrs. Roe

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the outcome of the 1989 European Community budget procedures.

Mr. Brooke

The President of the European Parliament declared the 1989 budget adopted on 15 December after the Council's budget committee, at a meeting in Strasbourg, had authorised the President of the Budget Council to accept the level of expenditure which resulted from the Parliament's second reading debate.

The 1989 budget amounts to 46,423 mecu (£32,250 million) in commitments and 44,838 mecu (£31,150 million) in payments, respectively 2,052 mecu (£1,426 million) and 2,047 mecu (£1,422 million) below the overall expenditure ceilings in the financial perspective, which forms part of the inter-institutional agreement (IIA) between the Council, the Parliament and the Commission. Provision for expenditure on agricultural market support is 26,761 mecu (£18,590 million), almost 1,900 mecu (£1,320 million) less than the limit set by the financial guideline calculated in accordance with the budget discipline decision. Non-compulsory expenditure totals 13,848 mecu (£9,620 million) in commitments and 12,241 mecu (£8,504 million) in payments. These figures are 19.5 per cent. and 21.0 per cent. respectively higher than in the 1988 budget, reflecting the significant increase in the structural funds agreed at the February European Council. Provision for the United Kingdom's abatement under the Fontainebleau arrangements is 1,780 mecu (£1,237 million).

Taking account of a provisional surplus of 2,000 mecu (£1,390 million) carried forward from 1988, the own resources called up for the 1989 Budget represent 1.03 per cent. of Community GNP, compared with the relevant annual sub-ceiling in the new own resources decision of 1.17 per cent.