On the other hand, the European Commission welcomed the budgets of France, Greece and Spain, which respect their recommendations regarding aid.
Germany’s planned budget spending next year to protect its economy from rising energy prices is not “targeted” enough. This is what the European Commission estimated on Tuesday. On the other hand, I gave a thumbs up to France on this point.
In an opinion on draft EU member states’ budgets for 2023, published on Tuesday, the EU’s executive committee singled out Germany and nine other countries, including Austria, Belgium and the Netherlands, as ruling their plans for next year “totally inconsistent” with the Commission’s recommendations. . . This “invites” this group of ten countries – which also includes Estonia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Slovenia, Slovakia and Portugal – to “take the necessary measures (…) to ensure that its 2023 budget is fully in line” with its recommendations.
Germany has been accused of unfair competition
In the case of Germany, Brussels believes that the increase in budget expenditures “is not caused by temporary and targeted support for the most vulnerable households and businesses.” Since announcing a massive €200 billion aid plan to help households and businesses deal with soaring energy prices, Germany has come under a lot of criticism. In particular, it has been accused by many European officials of unfair competition with other countries in the European Union.
However, this opinion of the European Commission is not binding. The Stability and Growth Pact rules, which place delicate constraints on national budgets, have been suspended until the end of 2023 due to the economic crisis caused by the war in Ukraine. A European official explained that Tuesday’s call aims above all to “engage in work with member states to see how the targeting of their measures can be improved”.
France, Greece and Spain are good students
On the other hand, the committee considers that the draft budgets of France, Greece and Spain for the year 2023 “respect the recommendations,” especially those related to limiting assistance to the most vulnerable families and companies.
Regarding Italy, Brussels refrained from giving an opinion, pending information on the recent measures taken by the new government of Giorgia Meloni.
Among the heavily indebted countries, Belgium is identified: growth in planned spending in its budget for next year is considered excessive. “A big part of the problem comes from linking public sector wages and social benefits to inflation,” the European official commented.