Brussels lowers expectations about ‘green’ overhaul of Stability and Growth Pact

(EurActiv, 18 Dec 2019) The European Commission is cautious about loosening EU fiscal rules in order to incentivise ‘green’ investment by member states. Valdis Dombrovskis, the Commission Vice-President for the economy, said on Tuesday (17 December) he wants to avoid “divisive” issues.

The Commission will launch in January a review of the Stability and Growth Pact, aiming to simplify and streamline fiscal rules adopted after the 2008 financial crisis to strengthen the monitoring of member states’ public accounts.

The process will include member states, and the first legislative proposals could come by the end of the first half of 2020, the Commissioner for Economic Affairs, Paolo Gentiloni, said on Tuesday (17 December).

Speaking alongside Gentiloni, Dombrovskis added that he expected a “lively” discussion on the Stability and Growth Pact review.

In order to support the transition to a low-carbon economy, one of the ideas under discussion is to exclude national investments into ‘green’ priorities from the deficit calculation.

The European Fiscal Board, and a few countries, including Spain, Portugal and Italy, are supporting the idea.

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EurActiv, 18 Dec 2019: Brussels lowers expectations about ‘green’ overhaul of Stability and Growth Pact