The Defence Committee of the House on Wednesday approved a de facto draft 2013 budget of the Ministry of Defence, which amounted to 2.715 billion euros, while some members have called the incumbent minister, Pieter De Crem, to promote greater European defense.
Six of the members present, the majority voted in favor of theto render to the Committee on Finance and Budget, while three of the opposition abstained. The budget agreement set the defense budget to 2.715 billion euros this year. In nominal terms, it is a budget reduction of about 6 million euros compared to 2012 actual budget and effort of 32.7 million euros compared to the budget adopted in bilateral before fixing final federal budget in late November, said Mr De Crem (CD & V) to members, saying its budget spared "draconian and unrealistic." Defense, however, contributed "substantially and solidarity" in the public finances, he said. The minister, however, got 3.2 million of additional appropriations for a specific grant National Geographic Institute (IGN) for the continuation of the implementation of the INSPIRE directive to establish an infrastructure for spatial information in the European Union. (PVO)