Monday, 26 November 2007

EU Blows Billions on Galileo Project

The EU will go ahead with the Galileo and European Institute of Technology projects, it has announced.

The European Parliament said today:

"We came here to cut the Gordian knot", said Reimer Böge (EPP-ED, DE), chair of the EP delegation and of the Budgets Committee, at the start of the conciliation, referring to Galileo and the European Institute of Technology (EIT). By the close of the talks it was agreed, thanks to Parliament's insistence, that Galileo (the European satellite navigation system, which will be independent of the American, Russian and Chinese systems) will be funded entirely by the Community. The amount needed by 2013 (a shortfall of €2.4bn) will be found mainly from the revision of the Financial Perspective (€1.6bn of "new" money taken from agricultural expenditure not used in 2007). The rest will come from the redeployment of funds intended for a few programmes that do not come under co-decision (€200 million), the "re-prioritisation" (change in the order of priorities to be funded: €400 million) of certain amounts earmarked for research and the unused margins in Heading 1a (Competitiveness and growth: €300 million). Funding for the EIT (€300 million) is part of this financial package totalling €2.7bn (up to 2013). Failing a satisfactory agreement on the Galileo programme, this project, which is politically, economically and symbolically crucial for the EU, might have collapsed." Click here.

Heise Online said:

Following months of disagreements, the EU has reached a funding compromise and resolved the crisis around its Galileo satellite navigation system. Two thirds of the missing 2.4 billion euros will be provided from EU farming pots alone. This was announced by the Portuguese Chair of the European Council in Brussels on Friday night following more than 12 hours of budget negotiations for 2008 by the EU Ministers of Finance or their representatives. Click here.

EU Observer said:
EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS - EU ministers have agreed to full public financing of the Galileo satellite system and a brand new technology institute, as part of a deal on the bloc's 2008 budget - the first ever to earmark more cash for growth and jobs than for farm aid.After months of disagreement over who should foot the bill for the two big projects – private sector co-financing was originally the plan - member states agreed late Friday (23 November) to push forward with them using funds solely from EU coffers. Click here.

No comments: