Johannes Hahn is not against climate protection and certainly not against the European Union’s climate protection package that the EU Commission presented this week. Nevertheless, the EU commissioner responsible for the budget was the only member of the EU commission to vote against the “Fit for 55” package on Wednesday. He cites a lack of connection to new EU sources of income (keyword: own resources) as the reason for this. “My vote against was directed against the lack of connection to the new own funds, which was originally part of the package,” explains Hahn in an interview with “Standard”.
Hahn warns that the financing of the climate protection package needs a serious basis through new EU revenues. “Due to the lively discussion process and the diverse opinions on this complex package, I requested a vote and cast my vote.” But he by no means voted against the ambitious climate package of the Commission, “which I fully support. I also made this clear at the Commission meeting”.
The Austrian commissioner justified his vote against with the lack of new EU sources of income, which were originally part of the package. “It was planned for a long time, the communication about the new own resources including details on the climate-relevant own resources as an extended area of application of the ETS (emissions trading system, note) and the border adjustment mechanism (CO2 tax for imports, note) in connection and direct connection to the Present climate package. “
In the “Standard” interview, Hahn points out that the digital tax has already been postponed to autumn. “As budget commissioner, it is my responsibility and duty to ensure that the introduction of the new own resources, to which we have committed ourselves to the European Parliament and the Council, happens in a timely manner so that the money raised on the market can be repaid via the Guarantee the NGEU (Next Generation EU) program. ” He therefore hoped that, with his vote against, he was able to “generate attention that the NGEU reconstruction fund is a financial architecture that also provides for the introduction of own funds”. Without these new own resources, the Member States would have to increase their contributions to the EU budget, “and I cannot imagine that this alternative will be accepted by the Member States”. Hahn expects the EU Commission to present a balanced package of own funds as soon as possible in autumn. (apa)