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Reporting of planned deficits by Member States

This Regulation specifies the rules under which Member States must report to the Commission information regarding their government deficit and government debt.


Council Regulation (EC) No 479/2009 of 25 May 2009 on the application of the Protocol on the excessive deficit procedure annexed to the Treaty establishing the European Community (Codified version) [See amending act(s)].


Member States must comply with maximum thresholds concerning their government debt and government budget deficit. The Commission is the institution responsible for ensuring that Member States meet their commitments.

This Regulation sets out the arrangements under which the Member States provide the Commission with information on their government deficit and debt.

Member States open themselves up to penalties in accordance with the excessive deficit procedure if they do not meet their budget commitments.

Rules concerning Member State reporting

Member States must provide several types of information, specifically:

  • an estimate of their government deficit for the current year (year n);
  • an estimate of their government deficit for year n-1;
  • the actual government deficits for years n-2, n-3 and n-4;
  • an estimate of their government debt level for year n;
  • the actual government debt levels for years n-1, n-2, n-3 and n-4.

Member States are required to provide this information twice a year:

  • the first time before 1 April of the current year;
  • the second time before 1 October of the same year; the reports submitted at this time are updates of the estimates submitted before 1 April.

Quality of the information provided by Member States

Eurostat is the Commission service responsible for receiving the information provided by Member States. Its role includes ensuring the quality of Member States’ data, specifically with regard to its completeness, reliability and compliance with accounting rules. Moreover, these rules are listed in the European system of national and regional accounts in the EU.

Eurostat carries out regular assessments of the quality of the data reported by Member States. It also has permanent dialogue with the authorities in the Member States. For example, it can request a detailed inventory of the accounting methods, procedures and sources used by Member States to establish their statistical data.


ActEntry into forceDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal

Regulation (EC) No 479/2009



OJ L 145, 10.6.2009

Amending act(s)Entry into forceDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal

Regulation (EC) No 679/2010


OJ L 198, 30.7.2010

Last updated: 11.02.2011
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