EU drops deficit action against Britain

LUXEMBOURG - The European Union on Tuesday dropped disciplinary deficit action against Britain after concluding that London had reined in its fiscal shortfall within European limits, an EU official said.

By (AFP)

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Published: Tue 9 Oct 2007, 4:29 PM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 11:24 PM

EU finance ministers, meeting in Luxembourg, rubber-stamped a recommendation from the European Commission to call off the action after Brussels received evidence that the British public deficit had reduced to within an EU limit of three percent of output.

The Commission said last month that the British public deficit for the year ending March 31 came in at 2.7 percent of gross domestic product, compared with 3.2 percent the previous year.

That was the first time since 2002 that the deficit met often-flaunted European Union rules requiring deficits to be kept to less than three percent of output.

Britain’s EU partners had set an April 2007 deadline for bringing the deficit down to less than three percent after the hole in the public finances hit 3.4 percent in the 2004-2005 financial year.

The EU decision comes as Britain’s finance minister Alistair Darling was in London to give his pre-budget report and set out future government spending.

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