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Agency carry-overs anger finance ministers

Finance ministers want the European Commission to tighten up controls on funding for decentralised EU bodies, such as the European Medicines Agency and research Joint Undertakings, to curb over-budgeting.

In their guidelines for the EU budget 2013, published after a Council of Ministers meeting in Brussels on 21 February, ministers say agencies carry over too much unused money from one year to the next. The Council adds that agencies’ funding should “provide for real needs,” and the Commission should “carefully check, and if necessary revise, the requirements of funds and posts as proposed by the agencies”.

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