Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2006-10-24-Speech-2-231"

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"Mr President, Commissioner, I would like to begin by congratulating the two rapporteurs, Mr Elles and Mr Grech, who have shown prudence in their respective draft budgets. Prudence does not necessarily mean an agreement with the Council, because it does not necessarily mean agreeing with the indiscriminate reductions that the Council has established in those budget lines that were not of interest to it, in other words all those that do not relate to common foreign and security policy, a field in which Parliament has made a reduction. We very much agree with the principle of value for money which our rapporteur advocates for the general budget, particularly at a time like this, a time of extreme financial restriction. Given the European Union’s prevailing ideology, which some of us do not share, of applying 1% to the budget, a careful analysis of the budget lines, of their level of execution and of European added value is essential. Perhaps we do not see the notion of ‘value for money’ in the same way as the Council, but, in any event, it is good that it should be accepted as a budgetary principle. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the President-in-Office of the Council for being here for the majority of the budgetary debate; that does not normally happen and I therefore thank her. Issues such as the fight against terrorism, the funding of a genuine common immigration policy and implementation of the policies linked to the Lisbon Strategy are treated as a priority by the European Parliament at its first reading. We agree with the strategy on payments proposed by our rapporteur, as well as with the proposed focus on the funding of the common foreign and security policy. Finally, Mr President, we see the budgetary reserves as a very useful instrument, not just for negotiation and good financial management, but also so that, as budgetary authority, we can acquire the information that the Commission often finds it difficult to provide us with for practical reasons."@en1

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