Ashworth on EU budget “UK will not give into threats”

News Desk

Richard Ashworth the leader of the UK Conservatives in the European Parliament underlined the need for cool heads during the protracted EU budget talks.

“The UK veto may be a thorn in the side of some in Brussels, but it is a legal reality and it is there for a reason. They cannot just wish it away, it would require treaty change.”

A recent summit failed to reach agreement on the EU budget but Prime Minister David Cameron is still optimistic an “EU budget deal is still within grasp”.

A deal is still possible according to the Prime Minister who told Reuters that “a deal to secure a long-term budget deal could be agreed if cuts are made to spending “by cutting billions of euros”.

“We do believe a deal is still do-able. It is in our interests to get a deal. But that deal can not come at any cost.”

The long-term budget, covering about €1,000bn spending over seven years, requires unanimity by all member states to be passed.

The Daily Teleraph in a report said that European Council President Herman Van Rompuy last week tabled a draft budget that included €80bn in cuts from that proposed by the Commission but the UK is still pressing for further cuts, particularly to the salaries and benefits of EU civil servants.

Budget talks will resume in Brussels on Monday where Britain will try to push down ever-rising EU administrative costs, an estimated 70 per cent of which go on pay and perks.
According to official figures seen by The Daily Telegraph, some 18% of EU officials earn £100,000 per year compared to 0.5 per cent of British civil servants while around 1,000 EU officials earn more than the Prime Minister.