Remarks by President Charles Michel after the special meeting of the European Council on 20-21 February 2020 - EU monitor

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Remarks by President Charles Michel after the special meeting of the European Council on 20-21 February 2020

Source: European Councili, published on Friday, February 21 2020.

The last weeks and the last days, we have worked very hard in order to try to reach an agreement regarding the next European budget.

Unfortunately, today we have observed that it was not possible to reach an agreement. We have observed that we need more time. We know that this European budget is a very difficult topic, it's a very difficult negotiation, especially after Brexit and the gap between 60 and 75 billion euro.

We have worked very hard to try to reconcile the different concerns, the different interests, the different opinions on the table. But we need more time. It means that we will see in the future how it is possible to work on this topic in order to succeed, in order to get an agreement in the Council, to have unanimity in the Council.

I would like to thank all the delegations and the heads of state or government, who have shown great willing to try to work with us at technical and political level. I would of course also like to thank the Commission, Ursula von der Leyen and her entire team for all their support throughout the last weeks and days.

Of course, we remain very committed and very determined. We know that the European project is one that requires effort and tenacity, steadfastness and determination. This is the spirit which lives in us, which drives us. We are very conscious of the nature of the constraints and challenges we face. We know that there are many issues on the table of the European institutions, and the meeting that was held yesterday, last night and today was one from which we can also learn in terms of how we can try to take this European project forward in the future.

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