IRELAND IS SET to contribute between €90 million and €100 million extra to the European Union budget for 2013, in a deal reached by the EU’s finance ministers today.
The contribution forms part of a €7.3 billion package being put together by the 27 member states to cover a funding shortfall.
The extra funds come after the European Commission asked member states to stump up €11.2 billion extra for 2013.
Authorities in Brussels said the extra funding was needed because member states had asked them to spend more than originally planned on matters to address youth unemployment and other growing social problems.
In March, EU budget commissioner Janusz Lewandowski said the shortfall in the budget was a ‘snowball’ of smaller deficits which had not been addressed.
Today’s deal will still leave a shortfall of almost €4 billion, which will be re-examined later in the year and may be absorbed into the 2014 Budget.
The deal, brokered by the Irish Presidency of the Council of the EU, came after some member states refused to pledge the full €11.2 billion Brussels had asked for – with some diplomats citing budget pressures in their own countries.
Ireland generally contributes about 1.27 per cent of the EU’s total Budget, meaning it will contribute roughly €93 million of the new amount.
Germany, the largest donor, will pay over a fifth of the total amount – meaning a bill of roughly €1.3 billion.