This afternoon I attended a meeting of the EESC’s Budget Group at the invitation of its President, Jacek Krawczyk (Employers’ Group/Poland), for the discussion around the drafting of the Committee’s draft 2013 budget. I have written about the difficulties of this process before. The rapporteur, Madi Sharma (Employers’ Group/United Kingdom) and her fellow members of the drafting sub-group have had a complex task, making allowance for ‘known unknowns’ (next year’s inflation rate, for example) whilst being sure to budget responsibly so as to meet the Committee’s legal obligations, and all the while presenting a reasonable, rational, but also austere budget in a consensual fashion. My task was, for once, an easy one: I sincerely congratulated everyone!