HIGHLIGHTS-Leaders' comments after EU budget talks

BRUSSELS Fri Feb 8, 2013 12:22pm EST

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BRUSSELS Feb 8 (Reuters) - European Union leaders on Friday agreed a new multi-year budget after talks that ran through the night.

Following are comments from EU leaders:

GERMAN CHANCELLOR ANGELA MERKEL

"From my point of view this agreement is good and it is important because it gives us the ability to act in Europe in the coming years. It gives us the ability to plan for important projects and with a view to growth and employment, that's decisive because the security to plan for investors is the precondition for us to even reach growth and employment again."

"It is important that we have also set a sign for solidarity and it is important for all of those who followed us from outside Europe over the past hours to see: results sometimes take time but the European Union is capable of reaching results."

EUROPEAN COUNCIL PRESIDENT HERMAN VAN ROMPUY

"It's perhaps nobody's perfect budget, but there's a lot in it for everybody."

"It's future-orientated. It's realistic and it's driven by pressing concerns."

"We simply could not ignore the extremely difficult economic realities across Europe, so it had to be a leaner budget. For the first time ever, there is a real cut compared to the last multi-annual financial framework."

EUROPEAN COMMISSION PRESIDENT JOSE MANUEL BARROSO

"The Commission would have of course preferred an outcome closer to its original proposal. As you know, in 2011 the European Commission made a proposal that was more ambitious than this result today."

FRENCH PRESIDENT FRANCOIS HOLLANDE

"The statements by the president of the ECB were effective because in recent days the euro has weakened."

"The ECB has enabled, with these declarations, a return to a euro level that is compatible with the real economy."

"Is this your dream budget? I would say if I were alone, no, it would have been different."

"My responsibility was to put forward what I thought was the best given the circumstances. The circumstances are the fiscal situation."

BRITISH PRIME MINISTER DAVID CAMERON

"People do understand that the major problem we had was that the credit card limit for the European Union has been too high, it's always been pushed up, there are lots of people who wanted to put it up and at last someone has come along and said this has got to stop, it is time for that credit card limit to come down." (Reporting by Claire Davenport, Barbara Lewis and Ethan Bilby)

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