Despite hours of debate at a year-end summit on Saturday, EU leaders are still not decided on the hotly contested location of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

The 15 heads of state and government did agree however that as an emergency measure the EFSA should be temporarily housed in Brussels from next month.

While it is envisioned as a European equivalent of the US Food and Drug Administration in terms of its goal of protecting the consumer, the EFSA will remain as an independent board of scientists and other specialists and the fight for its location was strongly contested by, among others, Barcelona, Helsinki, Lille and Parma.

Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt reported that after the debate seemed to involve “bargaining endlessly into the night” the decision should be postponed for now.

To read about Barcelona’s bid to home the agency, click here.

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