Brexit: Lord Frost hits out at EU over Northern Ireland Protocol

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On Tuesday, the European Council and European Parliament reached “an informal political agreement on the budget for 2022″, with the European Commission “acting as an honest broker”. It means €170.6billion (£145.8billion) will be spent by the Commission next year, with spending areas also set in stone as part of the wide-ranging plan. The huge funds will come from contributions the small number of net payers make to the EU’s budget.

During previous years, the UK has had to pay over 12.5 percent of the agreed total and, for 2022, this would have amounted to more than £18billion, according to a new report from Facts4EU.org.

But Brexit will see the UK sidestep this at a time when global economies are recovering following the spending of billions of pounds to help their respective countries bounce back from the devastating Covid pandemic.

In its report, Facts4EU.org said it used a “very conservative estimate of 12.5 percent of the cost, being the absolute minimum which the British people would have been paying towards the political priorities of the Brussels autocrats next year”.

Next year, the EU budget will be spent on the Single Market, Innovation and Digital (£18.4 billion); Cohesion, Resilience and Values (£53 billion); Common Agricultural Policy and Green Agenda (£48.4billion); Migration and Border Management (£2.6 billion); Security and Defence (£1.1billion); payments to possible new joiners and foreign aid (£11 billion); EU admin (£9.1 billion); and “Thematic special instruments” (£2.2billion).

The research firm has suggested “extras” the UK “would have been in for, which do not appear on the EU’s main summary”.

These include a €5billion off-budget “EU Peace Facility”, described as “an extra defence budget controlled by the Commission” that Facts4EU.org claims doesn’t appear in the official figures.

Facts4EU.org said: “It is also worth mentioning that whilst payments to the EU’s wannabe member states (plus foreign aid) are set at €12.9billion, its commitments are 33 percent higher, at €17.2billion.

“This difference will have to be paid in the following years.

“Finally, £53billion of the total in our table above is for ‘cohesion’.

“This is an EU fund that only pays out to less developed EU countries and which has been giving them enviable new motorways, railways, and other infrastructure.

“The UK was excluded completely and never received a penny from this massive fund, despite paying for a significant proportion of it.”

But, under the terms of the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement agreed by former Prime Minister Theresa May, a chunk of the money will still be paid by the UK to the EU – despite formally leaving the bloc on January 1, 2021.

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In January, Facts4EU.org revealed Britain had paid the EU £41billion in continuing contributions, from the Leave vote in 2016 until the end of 2020.

It added that, under the terms of the Withdrawal Agreement, the UK will continue to pay into the EU budget until 2064.

The official figures of the UK’s contributions to the EU do not include its large payments into the EU’s “off-budget’” funds.

Despite this, Facts4EU.org said the UK has had a “lucky escape” by not having to pay its usual eye-watering sum into the EU’s lofty budget.

The research firm concluded: “With an EU budget in 2022 of £146billion, the UK would have been in for a sizeable proportion of this, if it were not for Brexit.

“As it is, and as a result of the early agreement by Theresa May when she was still PM to pay the EU a ‘divorce bill’ which has no basis in EU or UK law, the British taxpayer will still be paying monies to the EU until the year 2064.

“The best we can say is that at least the United Kingdom will be paying a great deal less towards the priorities of the Brussels Eurocrats, and far less in a wealth transfer to poorer EU countries which the Commission portrays as its own largesse, than would have been the case if the British people had not voted Leave in 2016.”

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