"I would be very satisfied if the long-term budget for Lithuania was not substantially smaller than it was in the last financial perspective. That would be very good taking into account the existing attitude to the EU budget in those countries and of those citizens who pay the largest share of taxes in to the EU budget," the minister told reporters at a joint press conference with his Baltic counterparts on Friday.
The EU is holding intensive talks on the future budget, and a final decision is expected at a summit later this month.
But positions vary significantly as countries, like the UK, that pay a lot to the budget, want it to be cut on the basis of ongoing austerity policies in the member states. The European Commission and the European Parliament want the budget to increase in order to stimulate growth.
The Baltic states are also against a proposal to link the structural aid cap to the year when Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia went through the deepest recession. In this case, the Baltic states hope for an exception from this common formula. Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia also want faster unification of payments to farmers.
Ažubalis has also highlighted Lithuania's position that "with a small budget, the EU will not deal with economic challenges it is facing" and also acknowledged that the Baltic states cannot "dramatically change the budget."
The Baltic ministers also said they supported planned protests by Lithuania, Latvian, and Estonian farmers.
At a press conference on Friday, representatives of Lithuanian farmers said they received payments equal to around 50 percent of the EU average, and they were set to rise to 65 percent in the EU's new financial perspective.
Latvian Minister for Foreign Affairs Edgars Rinkevics said the numbers proposed to Latvia were worse.
"We consider that the current proposal by the European Commission concerning direct payments, which for Latvia amounts to 53 percent of the average, is totally unacceptable," he said.
"It's simply unfair, this proposal that concerns agricultural subsidies," Estonian Minister of Foreign Affairs Urmas Paet said.
Around 40 people from Lithuania, around 100 people from the three Baltic states in total, plan to attend the protest in Brussels during EU summit on 22-23 November. Andriejus Stancikas, president of the Lithuanian Chamber of Agriculture, said they only want equal conditions from EU leaders.
Baltic farmers will launch their protest with an old Soviet tractor leaving Tallinn on 12 November. It will go via all three Baltic states symbolizing the difficult situation of Baltic farmers and unequal conditions in the European Union. The tractor is scheduled to arrive in Brussels on 22 November and bring sacks of requests from Baltic farmers.
Baltic farmers also held protests in June. Then EP President Martin Schulz received them and said he understood their requests to increase payments to Lithuanian, Latvian, and Estonian farmers.