Open Europe Blog

Here’s an update of Open Europe’s ‘veto count’: ten EU member states (UK, Denmark, Sweden, Italy, France, Portugal, Latvia, The Netherlands, Austria and Romania) have now explicitly threatened to veto the 2014-2020 EU budget. Several other countries are also unhappy with all or part of Herman Van Rompuy’s compromise proposal (see our latest flash analysis for further details).

This is what changed since we made our first ‘veto count’:

Italy and Portugal have both used the ‘V’ word for the first time. Interestingly, Italy has also suggested that it could seek a UK-style rebate to avoid its net contribution to the EU budget skyrocketing.

Latvia has also threatened to wield its veto. Latvian Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis said his country is not happy with the cuts to agricultural subsidies and cohesion policy proposed by Van Rompuy.

In Romania, incidentally, it looks as if EU budget talks have triggered another row between President Traian Basescu and Prime Minister Victor Ponta. The latter said he was ready to veto the budget, but President Basescu said this morning that “Romania’s interest is to negotiate, not to brandish the threat of using its veto right.” Given that Ponta is the one who usually attends EU summits, we consider Romania to be in the veto camp.

So over one-third of EU member states has therefore threatened to veto the next long-term EU budget so far. EU leaders could be looking at a long weekend…

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