Commission approves €476 million for diplomatic service
The European Commission today (15 September) endorsed a draft budget of €475.8 million for next year’s operations of the European Union’s new diplomatic service. Only €5.2m of the proposed budget is additional money; €359m will be transferred from the European Commission’s draft budget for 2011 and €82m from the 2011 draft budget of the Council of Ministers.
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The draft amending letter endorsed today will revise the 2011 draft budget, which will be subject to negotiations between the EU’s institutions in the coming weeks.
The European External Action Service (EEAS) is supposed to be launched on 1 December, and an initial budget for 2010 of €9.52m has already been approved by the Commission and, on Monday (13 September), by member states’ ministers meeting as the General Affairs Council. It still requires the approval of MEPs, as do amended staff and financial rules, before the new service can start its work.
The EEAS will be created through the transfer en bloc of 411 posts from the Council of Ministers and of 1,114 posts from the European Commission, as well as the creation of 118 new posts.