May 26, 2008
In a reformed EU budget spending programmes should be forward-looking and reflect common goals and priorities. The regulatory tasks of the European Union do not require large resources, although larger spending seem in order to fund projects of common interest in the fields of research, material and immaterial infrastructures, internal and external security, and also, to some extent, to foster increased economic productivity and investment in human capital.
The evolution of the CAP can provide a substantial part of the resources required to meet new demands. The increase in world food prices is creating favourable conditions for reducing CAP payments without inflicting undue pain on current beneficiaries. The reduction of CAP spending, as well as the phasing out of structural payments to poor regions of rich countries already under way, will help reduce existing imbalances in net payments to the EU budget, thus making UK rebate and other adjustments to net balances from the EU budget unnecessary.