Wednesday, 29 June 2011

EU wants more money

The EU wants to raise our membership fee to £17.3bn per year. That's a 12% increase, way ahead of inflation. Ouch!

Do we get a say in this? Yes, of course we do. It will be decided by qualified majority voting. Each country gets a number of votes according to the size of their population (rounded a bit.) Here's a list of the 27 members with how many votes each gets:

Germany         29
France          29
UK              29
Italy           29
Spain           27
Poland          27
Romania         14
Netherlands     13
Greece          12
Portugal        12
Belgium         12
Czech Rep.      12
Hungary         12
Sweden          10
Austria         10
Bulgaria        10
Denmark          7
Slovakia         7
Finland          7
Ireland          7
Lithuania        7
Latvia           4
Slovenia         4
Estonia          4
Cyprus           4
Luxembourg       4
Malta            3

Total          345

So 345 votes will be cast on this proposal to increase the EU budget. But how will each country vote? Well, some countries are net winners from EU spending so if the budget goes up they get more spent on them; others are net losers and a budget increase means they lose more.

The following countries are net winners:
Spain           27
Poland          27
Romania         14
Greece          12
Portugal        12
Belgium         12
Czech Rep.      12
Hungary         12
Bulgaria        10
Slovakia         7
Ireland          7
Lithuania        7
Latvia           4
Slovenia         4
Estonia          4
Luxembourg       4
Malta            3

Total          178
And these countries are net losers:
Germany         29
France          29
UK              29
Italy           29
Netherlands     13
Sweden          10
Austria         10
Denmark          7
Finland          7
Cyprus           4

Total          167
So there you have it: the net winners command 51.6% of the votes and will force the budget increase. There's little we can do to stop them, and they have no motivation to show any moderation in their demands. The game is rigged against us.

2 comments:

chefdave said...

Great post.

I predict that even some of the net loser countries will pass through the increase without too much scrutiny.

National politicians know which side their bread is buttered, the EU is always prepared to reward it's humble servants.

Anonymous said...

why not:)