Saturday, 28 March, 2020


European Union leaders wrangle over spending amid post-Brexit budget summit

EU leaders to clash over money as Brexit blows hole in budget EU leaders to debate over post-Brexit monetary challenges in Brussels - Republic World
Bennie Garza | 20 February, 2020, 19:01

Barnier has before proposed that it would ransom a trade deal for continued access to the UK's lucrative fishing waters, but the European Union may also demand the Elgin marbles be returns to the Parthenon in Greece.

The European Parliament, Commission, and Council are still negotiating where the money of EU funds, Common Agricultural Policy and Cohesion Policy, in particular, will go, according to CAN.

But the tone between Brussels and London has been deteriorating, with Britain increasingly saying it is ready to eschew a trade deal rather than cede "sovereignty" to the EU.

Mr Barnier referred to the political declaration agreed previous year by Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, which said a future relationship would be underpinned by provisions ensuring a "level playing field" between the United Kingdom and EU.

"We remain ready to propose this partnership if the United Kingdom wants it", the Brussels diplomat added.

"At the moment, we remain 230 billion euros (£192 billion) apart", European Parliament president David Sassoli said this week.

"Canada and Japan are also partners on upholding standards".

Since independence in 1832, Greece has repeatedly called for the return of the sculptures - known in Britain as the Elgin Marbles - that British diplomat Lord Elgin removed from the Parthenon temple in Athens in the early 19th century, when Greece was under Ottoman rule.

In a speech in the Belgian capital on Monday night, David Frost, Johnson's chief Brexit negotiator, insisted the United Kingdom would not sign up to alignment with EU rules or any supervisory role for the European court of justice, adding that the two sides were "genuinely sovereign equals".

While that didn't specify any cultural objects, an European Union diplomat not named by the news agency said that it was added at the request of Greece's New Democracy government after Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis earlier had requested only they be loaned as part of 2021 Greek celebrations marking independence from the Turks. "Every trade deal concluded has level playing field commitments", De Rynck added.

"We only want what other independent countries have", Mr Frost had said.

Diplomats and number crunchers have been working on the budget for years, but the issues are so divisive that the leaders' summit might last into Saturday and still end without a result.

"At that point, we recover our political and economic independence in full - why would we want to postpone it?"

"While we ould expect significant investment to deliver the Green Deal, the digital transition and a stronger Europe, President Michel confirms or deepens the cuts to funding for agriculture, cohesion, research, infrastructure investments, digitisation, SMEs, Erasmus, youth employment, migration, defence and many other areas", it said in a statement on Wednesday.

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