Barroso asks Schulz for help before a stop-payments needs to be issued

European Commission is bankrupt, needs urgent €2.7 billion injection

22.10.2013 - 11:58

European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has made a desperate plea for extra cash to keep the institution afloat.

Opening the European Parliament's plenary session in Strasbourg on 21 October, parliament president, Martin Schulz, said that he had been contacted by Barroso with a request for an extra €2.7 billion in a supplementary budget for 2013 in order for the commission to meet its financial obligations.

If not, it will run out of money “by mid-November.”

Schulz told MEPs that the problem was down to “a shortfall in customs duties.” he said he was taking the situation “seriously.” He blamed member states for the situation.

This comes as European leaders prepare to gather for a summit in Brussels on 24 October, designed to make headway in tackling youth unemployment and promoting competitiveness.

Schulz suggested the European Council a draft supplementary budget, for checking and approval by the parliament's budgets committee on the evening of 22 October. He then said the parliament would vote on the proposal.

MEPs had previously asked for a supplementary budget of their own, worth €3.9 billion, that has not yet been given the green light by the council, which may make any possible vote tricky.

There have been suggestions that instead of approving the commission’s budget demands, a range of supplementary options could be put forward for approval.