The European Commission has calculated that its Common Agricultural Policy budget needs for 2001 will be 932.5 million euros lower than previously forecast. Spending on the sugar regime will be 105m euros less than expected. The allocation for dairy is 399m less. But against the cuts in major sectors, there are still some anomalies in smaller markets. Olive oil, for instance, will pull in an additional 89m euros and beef an additional 82m euros. Some of the savings come from the methods used to structure the budget. But the effect of parity between the euro and the dollar has also closed the gap when it came to calculating the differences between world prices and internal market prices. This factor alone has given an estimated 430m euro saving in the budget. Other savings have been made with the drastic reduction in intervention stocks. There are no skimmed milk powder buffer stocks, for instance. Despite the fulminations of the accounting directorate, there are signs of the infamous rolling over of budget allocations returning. The Commission has staked its claim on a 900m euro surplus in the current year, which it intends to use for the 2001 farm budget. How strongly it will have to defend its position remains to be seen, but the move will not have passed unnoticed. {{PROVISIONS }}