EU demands 12% rise from UK

We may have ducked contributing towards a second Greek bail-out, but the EU is now gunning for a 12% rise - three times the rate of UK inflation, roughly - in Britain's budget contribution to the EU. That's the equivalent of £700 a year from each British family. Unfortunately we can't veto the EU plans.

Bigger hand-out

Unless we have the support of other EU states, that is. Germany has already called for a freeze in any increase. But many of the remaining 27 member states will not support a freeze, particularly the poorer ones.

Currently the UK pays £113.5bn. But the EU want an increase of between £9 and £14bn between 2014 and 2020.

Determined to get its message out, the EU is currently hiring a new increase in "communications specialists" with around 65 new spin doctors being hired. On top of almost 1,000 communication officials already working for the EU! (When did you last hear a round of redundancies in Brussels?)

It's war

One route to force EU states to stump up could be a new EU-wide tax which would help the EU boost its spending clout. This could be a tax integrated into the EU's carbon trading scheme (more painful for the UK's poor) or a 'Robin Hood' style tax on all financial transactions.

But the issue is not all about spending. It's also about expenses - especially if Portugal or Ireland were to default on their debt obligations. Then the extra cash would very much be needed. By the barrow load.

So keep your ears primed for news of a new "multi-annual financial framework". EU-speak for more of your cash. The gun has been fired for a budget war.
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