UK lack of influence in the EU costs taxpayer billions

New research by Vote Leave has found that the UK’s declining influence in the EU is costing UK taxpayers billions of pounds. The UK has not managed to block a single proposal placed in front of the EU Council from becoming law, handing the UK a £2.4bn billion bill each year.

  • The UK has opposed 72 measures in the EU Council which have gone on to become law.
  • Since the start of 2014, the UK has voted against 18 measures in the Council of Ministers. This means that 25% of Britain’s failures have taken place in the last two years alone.
  • In July 2012, the Council agreed to increase the EU budget for 2013 by €9,786 million, costing the UK taxpayer over €950 million. Later that year, an amendment increased the general EU budget of 2012 by €6,000 million. This saw the UK face an extra €588 million bill.
  • When it first joined in 1973, the UK had 19.8% of the votes in the Parliament. Today, it only has 9.7%.
  • In the last Parliamentary term (2009-2014), 1,936 motions were put before the European Parliament. 576 of these motions were against British interests and were opposed by the majority of British MEPs. However, 485 of these motions still passed. This is a failure rate of 84 per cent.
Since David Cameron became Prime Minister in 2010, the UK has voted against 40 measures and lost all of them. This is 56% of all 72 measures that the UK has voted against since 1996. It is more losses than all the other Prime Ministers combined.
Commenting, former Cabinet minister and Vice President of Conservatives for Britain Owen Paterson said:
"The fact that the UK is constantly outvoted shows that we need to renegotiate our terms of membership.
"I want to see a new relationship with our European neighbours based on trade and friendly cooperation with the ability to make our own rules in our own parliament.
"If the Prime Minister’s renegotiation does not achieve this, then I will Vote Leave in the upcoming referendum."

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Robert Oxley
Head of Media, Vote Leave
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