The Council of Europe and European Parliament (EP) today, Saturday 10th, reached a provisional political agreement after intense negotiations on the proposed reform of the EU’s economic governance framework.

The main objective of the reform is to ensure sound and sustainable public finances while promoting sustainable and inclusive growth in all member states through reforms and investment.

The Council and Parliament agreed to maintain the reform’s overall objective of reducing debt ratios and deficits in a gradual, realistic, sustained, and growth-friendly manner while protecting reforms and investment in strategic areas such as digital, green, social, or defense. At the same time, the new framework will provide appropriate room for counter-cyclical policies and address macroeconomic imbalances.

The agreement also maintains the obligation for member states to submit national medium-term fiscal structural plans.

The political deal will introduce a gradual fiscal adjustment path for nations whose government debt exceeds 60% of gross domestic product or whose deficit is above 3% of GDP. The agreement struck in Brussels late Friday between representatives of the European Commission, the European Parliament and member states in the EU Council still needs formal approval by national governments and the EU assembly to become law.

“The new rules will significantly improve the existing framework and ensure effective and applicable rules for all EU countries,” Belgian Finance Minister Vincent Van Peteghem said in a statement Saturday. “They will safeguard balanced and sustainable public finances, strengthen the focus on structural reforms, and foster investments, growth and job creation throughout the EU.”