Conservatives: EU cash grab shows Commissioners “just don’t get it”

Conservative MEPs reacted with anger today after the European Commission tried to undermine David Cameron’s historic budget cut by demanding an extra £500 million from British taxpayers to meet Brussels spending bills this year.

Commissioners insisted they needed an extra £3.8bn from national governments to pay for unbudgeted costs – including £200 million extra help to Ukraine. The rest of the money will be spent on youth employment projects and regional policy.

Richard Ashworth MEP, budget spokesman for the European Conservatives and Reformists Group, said: “Just three days after voters told them Europe had to mend its ways, the Commissioners have made it clear they still don’t get it.

“The people of Europe have drawn a line in the sand which the EU will cross at its peril. They need to wake up to the new reality.

” The budget cut is the budget cut. Any attempts by the Commission to chip away at the landmark deal negotiated by David Cameron will be fiercely fought by Britain and like-minded nations, as well as by Conservatives here in the Parliament. We are aghast at their cheek and we won’t let them get away with it.

“It shows how urgently Europe needs to change and how quickly Europe needs to sign up to the Prime Minister’s reform agenda. Let’s get this crucial reform agreed and then let British voters decide in a referendum. Only Conservatives can deliver that.”

Commission statement: