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Van Rompuy to propose €20bn extra budget cuts

By Toby Vogel  -  31.01.2013 / 06:01 CET
Council president presses to strike MFF deal.
Push for free trade with US
 

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Fact file
Summit schedule The leaders of the 27 member states plus Croatia – set to join the EU in July – will begin their two-day summit in Brussels on Thursday (7 February) at 3pm. Following the customary exchange of views with Martin Schulz, the president of the European Parliament, the leaders will hold a first plenary session on the EU's next seven-year budget, followed by bilateral consultations.

Herman Van Rompuy, the president of the European Council, does not intend to hold bilateral meetings with all 28 leaders, as he did in November. His plan, according to his office, is to complete negotiations on the long-term budget on Thursday night, leaving Friday for discussions on starting trade talks with the United States, on the Arab uprisings and on Mali.

Meetings ahaad of the summit:
30 January
Herman Van Rompuy, president of the European Council, met Viktor Orbán, prime minister of Hungary, in Brussels. He also met Algirdas Butkevicius, prime minister of Lithuania.

31 January
Van Rompuy will meet Mario Monti, prime minister of Italy, in Brussels. Monti will then travel to Berlin for talks with Angela Merkel, Germany's chancellor.

4 February
Van Rompuy will meet Prime Minister Victor Ponta of Romania in Brussels, while Merkel is due to meet Mariano Rajoy, prime minister of Spain, in Berlin.

6 February
Merkel to hold talks in Paris with President François Hollande.

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Spain's highest court says Catalonia is not sovereign and cannot hold referendum on independence.

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