EFSA Press Release, 25 January 2006
EFSA Management Board today expressed serious concern over the budget currently envisaged in the European Union Financial Framework 2007-2013 and its negative impact on the Authority. The Board also agreed to have an in-depth discussion in March on the independent EFSA Evaluation Report presently open for comments.
The European Council when reaching a common position in December 2005 on the multi-annual EU budget 2007-2013 decided to reduce the budget heading under which EFSA operates [Heading 3B “Citizenship”of the European Union Financial Framework 2007-2013 includes, among others, areas such as public health, youth, consumers protection, and culture]. This implies that the projected growth of EFSA until 2013 will stop at the end of this year, well before the Authority has reached its full capacity. The Board expressed concern that this would significantly reduce EFSA's ability to provide high quality independent scientific advice, and communicate findings in a timely manner. This could seriously undermine food safety in Europe .
The Board was particularly concerned that this decision had come at a time when the Authority's workload is increasing as a result of new European legislation on important issues like health claims and fortification of foods, novel foods, and food additives.
EFSA Management Board chairman, Stuart Slorach, will contact European Institutions, including the European Parliament, to discuss this worrying issue and seek support for reinstating the necessary increase in the Authority's budget until 2013.
The Board also agreed to discuss the Independent EFSA Evaluation Report in March, taking into account comments received following the on-going public consultation. The Board agreed to finalise its recommandations at its June meeting.