The way ahead

If no agreement is reached next week, there are two basic scenarios. In the first, a deal is struck at the European Council in December or in February. (Given the complexity of the economic governance issues on the agenda of the December Council, agreement in February appears more realistic.) This might provide just enough time for around 70 pieces of sector-specific implementing legislation to be adopted to allow spending under the MFF, which is supposed to take effect on 1 January 2014. (Such legislation requires backing from the European Parliament and from a weighted majority of member states.)

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