News release: “The European Commission today presented a major package of budgetary surveillance announcements, covering 13 euro area Member States and 3 non-euro Member States, with a special focus also on the euro area as an economic entity in its own right. For the first time, the Commission has issued opinions on euro area Member States’ Draft Budgetary Plans, which from this year must be submitted to the Commission by 15 October, at the same time as draft budgets are sent to national parliaments. Assessments have also been published regarding compliance with Council recommendations under the Excessive Deficit Procedure (EDP), potential breaches of the debt and deficit criteria under the Stability and Growth Pact (SGP), and on certain Member States’ plans for structural reforms with a budgetary impact outlined in their Economic Partnership Programmes (EPP).
Olli Rehn, European Commission Vice President in charge of Economic and Monetary Affairs and the Euro, said: “We have reached a turning point on the road to economic recovery and today we reach a milestone in the implementation of Europe’s strengthened economic governance. Today’s Commission opinions on national budgetary plans support the euro area Member States in their pursuit of stronger growth and fiscal sustainability. Because in an economic and monetary union, national budgetary decisions can have an impact well beyond national borders. Member States have given the Commission the responsibility to issue these opinions and I trust that they will thus be taken on board by national decision-makers.”