Labour and Liberals back introduction of new EU taxes

03-Jul-2013 @ 17:0

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Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

British Labour and Liberal MEPs today voted for theintroduction of new "Euro-taxes" to be levied across the continent - to raiseextra money directly for the European Union, bypassing Member States andremoving the ability of governments to limit EU spending.

In a vote today on the outcome ofthe recent Irish Presidency of the EU Council, which culminated in a keyagreement on the bloc's long-term budget, a resolution calling for new "ownresources" taxation to boost EU spending was pushed through with the help ofsome British MEPs.

Conservative MEPs have consistently opposed any moves towardsfurther own-resource taxation and so voted against the measure.

The leader ofBritain's Conservative MEPs Richard Ashworth, said: "The idea of an increasedEurope-wide VAT and financial transactions taxes - to stream money directly intothe EU coffers - has long been a cherished ambition of those who see the EU as aEuropean super-state in the making.

"They want theirown tax-raising powers so that they can be free of the constraints and balancesthat come with receiving their money from member-state governments. Quiterightly, when member states foot the bill for the EU's activities, they expect astrong say in how that money should be spent. That is how it shouldbe.

"Any changewould be to create a profound and unwelcome change in the relationship betweenthe member states and EU. So long as national governments fund the EU, theyremain masters of the process and the Commission and Parliament remain theservants.

"Those who voted for own-resources taxation want to reversethat balance of power.

"I believeBritish voters will be appalled by the idea of handing the EU powers to tax themdirectly and oblige them to hand over even more money to Brussels. I expect thatLabour and Liberal Democrat MEPs who supported this proposal will be requiredexplain themselves come election time."

Mr Ashworthwelcomed the historic long-term budget deal struck last week as major victoryfor David Cameron, who worked with like-minded partners in Europe to insist uponthe bloc's first ever budget cut. He said the 3.7% cut in spending wasvindication of the Prime Minister's firm approach.

Mr Ashworth toldMEPs and the Irish Premier Enda Kenny ahead of today's vote: "The Multi-AnnualFinancial Framework is the major success of a highly effectivepresidency.

"It is asensible and pragmatic agreement which reflects efforts to contain and controlcosts of government in the member states."

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