EU agrees budget after months of wrangling

Officials say that the compromise deal for 2015 was in line with Cameron's request for more austerity at the EU level

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The European Parliament and the 28 European Union member states yesterday finally reached a deal over the bloc’s budget for next year, agreeing on a figure of €141.2bn after months of disagreement over whether enough was being done to curb spending.

Britain and other national governments have been trying to lower their payments to the EU budget, while MEPs wanted to boost spending.

A British official said yesterday that the compromise deal for 2015 – although slightly up on the figure for 2014 – was in line with David Cameron’s request for more austerity at the EU level. In February last year, Mr Cameron claimed victory after leaders in Brussels agreed to cut spending in the 2014-2020 EU budget by about 3 per cent on the previous period. “The priority for the UK has been to protect the PM’s long-term EU budget deal, which is forcing restraint and which secured a reduction in the total EU budget over the current seven year period,” the diplomat said.