16 December, 2005
The first day of a crucial European Union Summit ended late on Thursday night here with a customary dinner, with all sides insisting on their positions regarding the EU 2007-2013 budget.
Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis in his remarks during the dinner referred to EU fiscal prospects in the 2007-20013 period underlining: "We have reached the moment of decisions. All are waiting from us to show political courage and a European spirit. I am convinced that the consensus sought is feasible and I hope that this will appear tomorrow."
Karamanlis asked for more funds than those proposed by the British presidency noting that "total expenditures must reflect our vision for the EU. The presidency's proposal is restrictive, taking into account the total amount of the available funds.
A satisfactory solution for the cohesion and agricultural development funds is the basic element for the achievement of a final solution. On the other hand, the presidency's proposal alters the ceiling for the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). In any case, any revision of the CAP should deal with the post-2013 period."
Source: Athens News Agency