Progress, but not big breakthrough. Trying to create a budget across the 19 economies of the eurozone is always a challenge.
Progress, but not big breakthrough. Trying to create a budget across the 19 economies of the eurozone is always a challenge. A dipsute with Italy over it parilous finances isn't helping. An outline for the budget's agreed, but not its size or how it will be funded. The group's president Mario Centeno described it as 'small steps':
"When we talk about a budget, the size matters and that will be decided by leaders later in the year, but the design of the instrument is also relevant. On financing, our discussions have covered a lot of ground but more work is definitely needed to define the appropriate sources of financing."
Italy's been given more time to show how it will comply with EU budget rules or face disciplinary action. French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire says:
" The Commission has raised its hand to Italy. I hope that Italy will seize the hand given by the Commission because it is in our common interest to pave the way for a constructive solution."
But Italy's finance minister says new measures aren't need to comply with EU fiscal rules, apparently contradicting Brussels's position.
A showdown remains in the cards