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MNI: Commission Favours More Time To Cut Debt- EU Officials

(MNI) Brussels

The European Commission wants the EU's fiscal rules to be more flexible but easier to enforce, officials say.

European Union officials say they are close to a compromise among member states over reform of the bloc’s fiscal rules, which would incentivise strategic investments in green and digital transition and allow more time for countries to reduce their debts to accepted levels, while at the same time making enforcement stricter and more automatic.

An Orientation Paper on Fiscal Rules reform set to be released by the European Commission on Oct 26, will largely echo a Spanish-Dutch proposal published in April, they said. The Commission is likely to suggest replacing the current 1/20 rule for high-debt states, which obliges them to reduce excess debt over the maximum permitted 60% of GDP by 5% each year, with customised plans which could significantly extend the timeframe for such reductions.

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European Union officials say they are close to a compromise among member states over reform of the bloc’s fiscal rules, which would incentivise strategic investments in green and digital transition and allow more time for countries to reduce their debts to accepted levels, while at the same time making enforcement stricter and more automatic.

An Orientation Paper on Fiscal Rules reform set to be released by the European Commission on Oct 26, will largely echo a Spanish-Dutch proposal published in April, they said. The Commission is likely to suggest replacing the current 1/20 rule for high-debt states, which obliges them to reduce excess debt over the maximum permitted 60% of GDP by 5% each year, with customised plans which could significantly extend the timeframe for such reductions.

Keep reading...Show less