Presentation on theme: "The European Union: A EUROREALIST VIEW <Your Name>"— Presentation transcript:
1 The European Union: A EUROREALIST VIEW <Your Name> These slides have been designed by Civitas to be used by speakers as the basis for talks to sixth formers in the Civitas Sceptical Talks to Schools Programme. They present arguments that can be used to make a SCEPTICAL argument about the operation of the EU, aimed at students WITH prior knowledge of the EU.These slides SHOULD NOT be used as a bloc and should not provide the entire structure for a talk. They have been designed as outlines to be changed by speakers to suit their own knowledge and experience. Speakers should feel free to adapt them, to pick and choose between different slides and to add their own facts and arguments. The layout has been kept ‘low-tech’ and we hope that they will prove reasonably easy to alter.Obviously, while Civitas is happy with the reliability of the data used in these slides, we cannot be held responsible for information added by speakers themselves. Remember, these slides should be treated as your own. They are not set in stone and we welcome suggestions about how they can be improved.The current set of sheets are divided into 5 sections covering the democratic deficit, national sovereignty, accountability, economic arguments and development. These have been chosen because our discussions with speakers have shown that these are areas in which particularly strong sceptical arguments can be made and in which the issues are particularly appealing to young people.
2 What is the EU?The EU was founded in 1957 under the Treaty of Rome by France, Germany, Italy and the Benelux nations.The aims:Prevention of future war.Creating ‘an ever closer union between the peoples of Europe’.Encouraging economic co-operation and development.Point 2:- to prevent future war, France, Belgium, Netherlands & Luxembourg wanted to integrate West Germany into a wider Europe-To create ‘an ever closer union’ through establishing a ‘Customs Union’ based on the ‘4 freedoms’: movement of goods, persons, services and capital.-All 6 founding members wanted to encourage post-war economic recovery & respond to the USA’s demands for open markets in return for Marshall Aid.?
3 The EU today: 27 members, 501m citizens -The most recent members (Romania and Bulgaria) joined in January 2007EU population source: Eurostat: 1st January
4 Why Should We Care About the EU? Approximately half of our laws now originate in an unelected bureaucracy in Brussels!Being a member of the EU costs us money. The UK contributed £9.2bn in 2010.Only 29% of UK citizens think membership of the EU is ‘a good thing’.It is such a politically sensitive issue that none of the major political parties want to talk about it.Point 1:The British Government estimates that around 50% of UK legislation with a significant economic impact originates from EU legislation. Over the twelve-year period from 1997 to 2009, 6.8% of primary legislation (Statutes) and 14.1% of secondary legislation (Statutory Instruments) had a role in implementing EU obligations, although the degree of involvement varied from passing reference to explicit implementation. (House of Commons LibraryAn exact figure is impossible to calculate .Gordon Brown stated that “approximately half of all new regulations that impact upon businesses in the UK originate in the EU” (source: Telegraph, 2004). The actual figure could be even higher – as much as 70-80% (Peter Lilley, 2008 and Forum for Private Businesses, 2008).-The British Chambers of Commerce calculate that the cumulative cost to UK business of EU regulations brought in since 1998 is £37.8billion – 75% of new regulatory burdens placed on firms since that date.- EU regulations introduced between cost the UK economy £148.2 billion (source: OpenEurope Out of Control: Measuring a decade of EU regulation, 2009, p3). This is equivalent to 10% UK GDP.-The EU has imposed more laws on us than parliament has in 700 years:c.26,500 lawsc.105,000 pieces of legislation.- 91 EU Directives were adopted in 2010 (source: EurLex website --694 EU Regulations were adopted in 2010 (source: EurLex website -Point 2:It cost each UK taxpayer approximately £300 last year (Office of National Statistics reported in Telegraph: March 2011)In 2010 the UK contributed £9.2bn, equivalent to £230 for each family – a 74% increase in the £5.3bn contribution in (Office of National Statistics reported on Better off Out:Point 3: Eurobarometer, Survey
5 The Widening and Deepening of European Integration The EU has expanded from 6 to 27 members.EU ‘competences’ now include many areas of policy traditionally reserved for nation states, e.g.Single currencyThe ‘Social Charter’Border controlPoint 1: EU “Enlarging”: 1957 founding members: France, West Germany, Italy, Belgium, The Netherlands, Luxembourg 1972 – Norway “no” 1973 – UK, Denmark & Ireland 1981 – Greece 1986 – Spain & Portugal 1994 – Norway “no” 1995 – Austria, Finland & Sweden 2004 – Estonia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia & Slovenia 2007 – Romania, Bulgaria official candidate countries in 2011 – Turkey, Iceland, FYR Macedonia, Montenegro,Croatia potential candidate countries – Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, KosovoPoint 2: EU “Deepening”: – Treaty of Rome 1986 – SEA 1992 – Maastricht Treaty (1995 – Schengen Agreement) 1997 – Amsterdam Treaty 2001 – Nice Treaty 2007 – Lisbon Treaty (entered into force in December 2009)The ‘Social Charter’ was adopted in 1961 and revised in 1996
6 Why We Should be Concerned The EU is undemocratic.The EU threatens national sovereignty.The EU is corrupt and unaccountable.The EU is crippling the UK economy and business with red-tape and protectionism.The EU is keeping the developing world in poverty.Point 3: -In 2004, some 9400 cases of fraud were reported. (source: EU Select Committee minutes-The EU Court of Auditor’s found that in 2006, half of all cattle declared by farmers in Slovenia (in order to qualify for grants) did not exist, while a quarter of sheep and goats had similarly disappeared. Also in 2006, in Spain, Greece and Italy, payments worth over €2bn for olive oil producers were either inflated or wrong!-In November 2010, the ECA refused to sign off the EU’s accounts for the 16th year in a row. (-The Court of Auditors (CoA) admits that 80% of all taxpayers money is never properly accounted for. (source: EU Select Committee minutes)Point 5: “The way to build lasting economic growth in Africa…is for Europe to end the CAP.”-Sir Digby Jones, Former Chairman CBI- agricultural protectionism and subsidies and free trade within the EU make it difficult for poorer countries to trade with the EU- sugar – high subsidies mean the EU is the world’s largest exporter of white sugar, disadvantaging producers in poorer countries who can produce it much cheaper but are denied access to the markets. Developing countries are hit by: restricted market access; undercut export opportunities; undermined value-added processing, and depressed and destabilised world prices (Oxfam, The Great EU Sugar Scam-European cows receive two Euros a day in subsidies – more than half the world’s population has to live on each day.-Where the EU gives aid, it is inefficiently allocated and often also tied to the exchange of goods/services. E.g. the EU Water Initiative (EUWI) failed to provide water or sanitation to a single person in its first 4 yrs!
7 1. The EU is Undemocratic European Commission Council of Ministers Unelected bureaucracy, but holds a monopolyon proposing new law.Attempts made in the Lisbon Treaty to improve the democratic credentials of the EU are not significant enough to make a real difference to the substantial democratic deficit.European Parliament:EP sits in both Brussels and, for just 49 days a year, in Strasbourg. Moving to Strasbourg one in every 4 weeks costs €203m (£175m) per year! (source: – This has triggered much debate about whether to abolish the Strasbourg plenary sessionsEP’s total budget for 2011 is €126.5 billion; divided by 736 MEPs this is €1.72m or £1.47m per MEP. (source -European Commission:‘Guardian of the Treaties’ with sole “right of initiative” in proposing EU legislation.Council of the EULisbon Treaty extends use of QMV to include climate change and energy security, but retains unanimity in areas of tax, foreign policy, defence and social security.Lisbon has also increased the transparency in the Council of Ministers as citizens and national parliaments now have access to reports about the goings on inside Council meetings.ECJ:ECJ has the power to fine governments and companies that breach EU law e.g:-Microsoft was fined £331m in 2004 for ‘abusing its dominant market position’,-5 UK firms were fined a combined £67m for operating a cartel in copper in 2006,-German energy group E.ON was fined £32m in 2008.– The ECJ threatened to fine France for not heeding advice from the European Commission on the protection of rare wild hamsters.Has often been a radical court – sees itself as having a mission to promote “ever closer union” e.g:Direct Applicability of treaty rights and Supremacy of EU law over national law – Van Gend en Loos 1963, Costa v Enel 1964“Mutual recognition” principle in Cassis de Dijon caseImposition of unlimited fines on states for non-complianceMain aspects of the democratic deficit:EU is too distant from citizens.The powers of the only democratically elected body (EP) are too weak.Not enough people vote in the EP elections, and those that do tend to vote on the basis of national opinions – ‘second order national elections’National parliaments do not have enough control over what goes on in Brussels.Council of MinistersMeets in secret to accept/rejectamendments, largely by QMV.European ParliamentTraffics legislation at break-neckspeed and can only accept,reject or propose amendmentsto legislation.
8 2. The EU Threatens Sovereignty The EU has imposed more laws on us than parliament has in 700 years:c Pieces of legislation adopted up to the end of 2010QMV means the UK can vote against a proposal, yet still have to enact it.EU law now trumps UK law.Point 1: - 91 EU Directives were adopted in 2010 (source: EurLex website --694 EU Regulations were adopted in 2010 (source: EurLex website -Open Europe has calculated that by 2005, the EU’s acquis communautaire – the whole body of EU law – ran over 666,879 pages of law since its inception in Open Europe predicted that “If the EU continues to legislate at current trends the acquis communautaire will have more than doubled by 2020 to 351,000 pages”, but the number of pages depends on which language it is translated into (source: p.8)Over the twelve-year period from 1997 to % of primary legislation (Statutes) and 14.1% of secondary legislation (StatutoryInstruments) had a role in implementing EU obligations, although the degree of involvement varied from passing reference to explicit implementation. (House of Commons Library, based on data from Eurlex:Point 3:-EU law trumps UK law due to principles of Direct effect and Supremacy:-Direct effect: EU law creates rights for individuals that must be upheld by national courts. (est. by Van Gend en Loos vs. Nederlandse Administratie de Belastingen )-Supremacy: EU law is superior to national laws when the ECJ has jurisdiction. (est. by Costa vs. ENEL ). Also British Factorame case , directly contradicted the ruling philosophy in the UK of parliamentary sovereignty, when a British Court elevated the interpretation of EU law above that of UK law. Therefore the EU has the power to alter the constitution of its member states!Additional information:-Tony Blair used the guillotine 350 times between to fast-track EU laws through parliament and frequently gold-plated legislation.
9 The EU ConstitutionThe EU drafted a Constitutional Treaty in 2002, which was finalised and signed by representatives of the member states in 2004.The Constitution was supposed to combine existing Treaties to clarify what the EU’s responsibilities were.But it was actually a further step in eroding sovereignty:The EU would derive its powers from its own constitution, not its Member States.EU given a ‘legal personality’No limits were set on the EU’s powersQMV to become the norm of EU decision-making with national vetoes on 63 issues lostPoint 3:-National vetoes were to be lost on aspects of transport, immigration, energy and foreign policy.-EU Constitution included:Centralisation of EU power; Granting the EU a legal personality; creating a President and single Foreign policy post; new powers for the EP; extending ECJ powers into Home Affairs; Making the CFR legally binding; new powers to harmonise national legal systems
10 The “reformed” EU Constitution France and the Netherlands both rejected the EU Constitution in referendums in June 2005.The response of the Constitution’s author :“Let’s be clear about this. The rejection of the Constitution was a mistake that will have to be corrected.” - Valery Giscard d’EstaingThe Constitutional project was resurrected under the guise of the Lisbon TreatyIt replaced the Constitution (but 96% of its content was the same as the Constitutional Treaty)Point 2: Valery Giscard d’Estaing, LSE lecture 06Point 3: Initiatives that were suggested following citizens’ rejection of the EU Constitution included: Nicolas Sarkozy’s ‘Mini Treaty’, the ‘Amato Group’ of ‘EU wise’ and Andrew Duff’s ‘Plan B’.Margot Wallstrom: “the commission would not like to depart too much from the constitutional treaty” (18 Oct 06).Point 4: Measures carried over from the Constitution include:Centralisation of EU power; Granting the EU a legal personality; creating a President and single Foreign policy post; new powers for the EP; extending ECJ powers into Home Affairs; Making the CFR legally binding; new powers to harmonise national legal systems; expansion of QMV in Council of Ministers; some measures to improve democracy; making the Charter of Fundamental Rights legally binding.-Some Lisbon Treaty measures (eg the creation of an External Action Service) began before the Treaty was even ratified.
11 The Lisbon Treaty - Berlin Declaration, March 2007 ‘We are united in our aim of placing the EU on a renewed common basis before EP elections in 2009’- Berlin Declaration, March 2007The Lisbon Treaty was signed in December 2007.However, Ireland rejected it in a referendum in June 2008Following controversial negotiations, Ireland voted ‘Yes’ in a second vote in October 2009.The euro-sceptic Czech Republic President, Vaclav Klaus, campaigned against the Treaty, but eventually signed it.The Treaty came into force in December 2009Point 1: The Treaty needed to be ratified by all 27 member states to come into force.Point 2: 53.7% voted ‘No’ to the Treaty while 46.3% voted ‘Yes’.- In December 2010, the EU institutions agreed to overhaul the EU’s committee system, reforming the old ‘comitology’ system. These changes are required by the Lisbon Treaty, which came into force in December Under the new rules, the Commission will have new discretion to either take a decision or review it where there is no weighted majority of member states against the decision.Point 3: 67.1% voted ‘yes’ to the Treaty while 32.9% voted ‘yes’
12 The Lisbon Treaty What’s included: Institutional changes: Removal of the pillar structureCo-decision ordinary legislative procedure (slightly greater role for the EP)New mechanism for the enforcement of the subsidiarity principleExtension of QMV in Council of MinistersFormalisation of the European Council and its PresidentDemocracy and RightsCitizens’ InitiativeWithdrawal procedureCharter of Fundamental Rights becomes legally bindingEurope as a global actorLegal personalityHigh Representative of the Union for Foreign AffairsExternal Action ServicePoint 3: the three pillar structure established at Maastricht is removed, making the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice of equal standing to Community matters and subject to the same legislative procedures (except some areas of operational police cooperation, criminal justice and administrative cooperation, in which member states retain some level of control).Point 4: the EP now has co-decision powers in more legislative areas, and has obtained more influence with regard to the EU budget. But this doesn’t really diminish the democratic deficit in this regard as there are still problems with the turnout to EP elections etc.Point 5: a system of yellow and orange cards has been introduced to allow national parliaments to ensure that the subsidiarity principle is being effectively enforced: national parliaments are given a timeframe in which to scrutinise EU legislation, and if they believe that the issues it addresses should be dealt with at a national or local level as opposed to at the EU level, they can call for the legislation to be withdrawn. However, it is unlikely that this is going to be a very effective procedure as national parliaments are busy enough as it is without having to spend time scrutinising EU legislation within the limited time period they are given to do so. This won’t really increase the role of national parliaments and is considered more of a token gesture.Point 6: Extension to areas including immigration and culture. QMV is now the default voting system in the Council. A new double majority system will be introduced in 2014, which will require 55% of member states assent and 65% of the EU population for a law to be passed. However, an increase in QMV means that what was effectively our ‘veto’ over acts of legislation which would impinge on our sovereignty is lost in 63 areas, so our law could be subjected to the whim of other EU states.Point 7: Prior to the Lisbon Treaty the European Council was not an official institution of the EU. There is also the new position of a Council President, who is elected for 2 ½ years by the European Council and whose job it is to prepare the Council’s work, ensure its continuity and work to secure consensus among member countries. Effectively a figurehead of the EU. Council President is Belgian PM Herman Van Rompuy.Point 9: EU citizens are given the power to invite the Commission to introduce legislation. However great this sounds, in practice it is unlikely to be effective. Similar provisions exist in the constitutions of several member states (e.g. Italy) but have been used incredibly rarely. There was also confusion about how this would actually work and it took a long time for the procedure to be clarified. It is also only an invitation, there is little obligation for the EU institutions to act on the initiatives, and the one million signatures that are required for an initiative represents such a tiny minority of EU citizens that there is the chance that we will be subjected to the tyranny of a minority in future EU legislation.Point 10: the Treaty contains explicit recognition of the possibility of a member state wanting to withdraw from the Union and outlines the procedures that would take place in that event.Point 11: the Charter of Fundamental Rights is incorporated into the Treaty structure and as such becomes legally binding. The UK has secured restrictions on its application in the UK (along with Poland and the Czech Republic) in an additional protocol to the Treaty.Point 13: the EU is given a single legal personality.Point 14: the introduction of the High Representative (who is also a vice-president of the Commission) was intended to increase the visibility of the EU on the global stage and to improve the EU’s foreign policy. The High Representative from is Baroness Catherine Ashton from the UK. She is the world’s highest paid female politician, earning approximately £330,000 per year. She was an interesting choice as she has no previous foreign policy experience. Ashton was given a seat in the House of Lords by Prime Minister Tony Blair, and has faced criticism for having never held an elected position.Point 15: a diplomatic service for the EU, headed by the High Representative for Foreign Affairs, and formally launched December Employs between 5000 and 7000 officials in delegations across the world. The 2011 budget for the EEAS is €475.8m and when fully operation is expected to be more like €3bn, although some estimates are as high as €5.7bn (£5bn) per year. German MEP Ingeborg Graessle: “You can only believe the claims that the service will be budget neutral if you believe in Santa Claus” (The Times BBC EU
13 High Representative for Foreign Affairs: Baroness Catherine Ashton President of the European Council: Herman van Rompuy
14 3.The EU is Corrupt and Accountable to No-one Limited lines of accountability between the EU and its citizens.The EU’s own auditors have refused to sign off EU accounts for the last sixteen years!EU accounts show limited links between the billions poured in and where the money actually goes.EU commissioners and civil servants have immunity from prosecution for life within the EU.Point 1: via European Parliament and Council of the European Union – see democratic deficit.Point 2:- In November 2010, the ECA refused to sign off the EU’s accounts for the 16th year in a row. (-In 2009, some ‘financial irregularities’ reported to the European Commission (-In 2006, the EU Court of Auditors found that half of all cattle declared by farmers in Slovenia (in order to qualify for grants) did not exist, while a quarter of sheep and goats had similarly disappeared. In Spain, Greece and Italy, payments worth over €2bn for olive oil producers were either inflated or wrong! Money was also spent on a large lemon and orange grove in Sicily that was later found not to exist.-The 2010 report found discrepancies in 90% of the EU’s budget for the previous year. (Point 3: The Court of Auditors (CoA) admits that 80% of all taxpayers money is never properly accounted for. (source: EU Select Committee minutes)Point 4: EU Commissioners receive huge financial assistance when they leave office, including so called ‘resettlement’ and ‘transitional’ allowances. (source:Further information: The EU’s budget for the period is €864 billion. By comparison, the UK expenditure for 2010 alone was estimated at about €778 billion. For its 2012 Budget, the EU anticipates payments of €132.7bn , an increase of 4.9%. The British, French and Dutch governments heavily criticised the above inflation increase in spending.The EU’s largest single expenditure item is the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) % of the total 2011 budget. The second largest element is Cohesion Policy at 33%. Foreign policy consumes 5.7%, and administration 6.5%. (Calculated from BBC figures:
15 Annual Increases in the EU Budget Image Source: BBC
16 4.Crippling the EconomyThe total gross cost to the UK of EU membership in 2008 was £65bn£28bn on meeting EU regulations£17bn on additional food costs due to CAP£3.3bn lost due to CFP£14.6bn direct fundingIn 2010, the EU cost UK taxpayers around £300 eachThe UK’s defence spending is only £37bn pa!Point 1:Figures 1-5 from the Bruges Group (-At the current rate, EU legislation could cost the UK c.£356bn by 2018 (source: OpenEurope Out of Control: Measuring a decade of EU regulation , Feb 2009, p4)See Milne, I. A Cost too Far?Point 3:The effect of CAP on food prices in the UK is staggering, the Bruges Group estimate that UK citizens face £15.6bn of additional food costs due to the CAP (the Bruges GroupEurope's twenty-seven food and agriculture ministers met on 24 January 2011 to begin the tough job of reforming the controversial Common Agricultural Policy.Without the rebate, the UK's net contribution as a percentage of national income would be twice as big as France's, and 1.5 times bigger than Germany's.Point 6: (Office of National Statistics reported in Telegraph: March 2011)In 2010 the UK contributed £9.2bn, equivalent to £230 for each family – a 74% increase in the £5.3bn contribution in (Office of National Statistics reported on Better off Out:Point 7: MoD Key facts:
17 Without the costs of EU membership and regulations, the UK could be £356bn richer by 2018. Point 1: (source: OpenEurope Out of Control: Measuring a decade of EU regulation , Feb 2009, p4)
18 The €uroThe euro was launched in Notes and coins were introduced in 2002.There are 17 Member States in the Eurozone.It was intended to make it easier to do business across the EU.‘One size fits all’ interest rate in the Eurozone is fitting no-one.2010 Eurozone crisis - €273bn has been spent so far bailing out Greece, Ireland and Portugal.Why risk entry?Point 2: Eurozone members:France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Greece, Finland,Austria, Ireland, Slovenia, Cyprus, Malta, Slovakia, and Estonia.All the 12 countries that joined the EU in 2004 were required to work towards adopting the euro as part of their Treaty obligationsEstonia joined the eurozone in January 2011.Point 4: The difficulty of setting a uniform interest is best exemplified by Ireland’s boom years (pre-2008, the country would have wanted to raise interest rates), and a stagnating Germany/France (would have wanted to lower interest rates).Point 5: Greece was loaned €110bn (£95bn) in May 2010, Ireland €85bn (£72bn) in November 2010, and Portugal €78bn (£68bn) in May 2011 (figures from BBC news: Plus, a €690bn European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) has been created. The Lisbon Treaty was amended so that the EFSF will be replaced by a permanent stability mechanism in There was speculation in June 2011 as to the possibility of a further loan for Greece., but this has been met with significant criticism from Germany.Further information – The Stability and Growth Pact:-Max. budget deficit is supposed to not exceed 3% of GDP.-In 2002 France and Germany overshot the ceiling; by 2004 Netherlands and Greece also did (Greece over 6%) and in 2005 Italy also did.-SGP was suspended in 2003, but reimposed in 2004 by the ECJ and in 2005 by EU finance ministers but made ‘flexible’. No fines were imposed. Then, during the global economic crisis in 2008 Ireland, Greece, Spain, France, Latvia and Malta all breached the 3% GDP debt maximum. Again, no fines were imposed.-According to the theory of ‘optimal currency areas’ this difficulty can only be offset by:1. Labour mobility across the region.2. Price and wage flexibility across the region.3. An automatic fiscal transfer mechanismThe Eurozone does not fully meet any of these goals.At a summit in February 2010, EU leaders promised that the Euro was not in danger and instructed Greece to cut its public spending and raise taxes to repay its debt. However, despite tough austerity measures, it quickly became apparent that Greece would need stronger financial backing from the EU. On 2 May 2010, eurozone states and the IMF agreed to a 'Stabilisation Mechanism' - a fund that low interest loans could be drawn from. The eurozone countries provided €80 billion, with a further €30 billion coming from the IMF. In a move to restore confidence in the Euro, the fund was made available to all Eurozone members. Greece withdrew the first loan on 18 May 2010.In late 2010, Ireland was suffering similar financial problems, and the eurozone countries agreed to a €11.7 billion bailout from the EFSF. The Lisbon Treaty was amended so that the EFSF will be replaced by a permanent stability mechanism in 2013.
19 Crippling Business“EU legislation costs European business £405bn a year. There is a view that the more regulations you have, the more rules you have, the more Europe you have.” -Gunter VerheugenThe total net cost of major EU regulations for UK business was £88.3bn at the end of July 2010In a poll of 1000 chief executives, 54% said the costs of the extra regulation outweighed the benefits of the Single Market.The costs to businesses are considered one of the main barriers to growthE.g. EU rules on safety standards for chemicals in 2010 had the potential to cause many companies to cease manufacturing as they were financially unable to comply.Quote: £405bn=€650 is 5.5% of total EU GDP. Gunther Verheugen, EU Enterprise Commissioner and Commission Vice-President. NB. Quote continued ..’I don’t agree with that view’.Point 1: British Chamber of Commerce EU Burdens Barometer 2010:Point 2: Source: Open Europe commissioned ICM poll, Oct 06. EU regulation "doesn't seem to be doing businesses, employees or consumers much good". Simon Wolfson, Next CEO, Open Europe board member.Point 3: The costs to businesses are considered one of the main barriers to growth. Deterring job creation, stifling entrepreneurial spirit and forcing businesses to fail unnecessarily. Small firms find it particularly difficult because they don’t have specialist staff to help them keep up with the constant stream of new rules and procedures. (North Staffordshire Chamber of CommercePoint 4: Financial Times:
20 ProtectionismThe EU restricts free trade by imposing tariffs (a tax) on imports to the EU.It also subsidises EU producers e.g. through CAP.Certain EU members, notably France and Spain, openly flout the four economic freedomsThis is all against the principle of the Single Market which the EU nominally aims to achieve.Point 3. The EU’s four economic freedoms: free movement of labour, capital, services and goods.Examples of protectionism:-2010 French MEP’s proposal to establish a carbon tax on all imports to the EU (-de Villepan’s ‘national champions’: ‘When times are hard, when the world is changing, it is a question of gathering our strength…and defending France and things French’ (de Villepan, Sept 05). He drew up a list of industries to be protected from takeovers inc. casinos and private security companies!!- Novartis (Swiss pharamaceutical company) takeover bid for Aventis resulted in French govt pressurising and securing takeover instead by French firm Sanofi-Synthelabo. (2005)Gaz de France-Suez merger to protect against bid by ENEL (Italian). (2006)The UK, Sweden and Ireland are the only countries not to have imposed some restrictions on the flow of migrant workers within the EU immediately upon enlargement in However, in January 2007, a new employment permit system was introduced in Ireland with the objective of further restricting lower-skilled work permit allocations whilst attempting to increase the country’s attractiveness to highly-skilled non-EEA workers.
21 Protectionism: the cost to the UK CAP costs the UK c.£10.3bn per year: £398 per household.UK citizens face an extra £17bn on their food bills because of the CAPThis hits the poorest in the UK the hardest.Point 1:CAP costs the UK £10.3bn per year, or £398 per household. This adds an average of £7.65 to each household’s weekly food bill. (1 Jan 2009 The Taxpayers’ AlliancePoint 2: The effect of CAP on food prices in the UK is staggering, the Bruges group estimate that UK citizens face £17bn of additional food costs due to the CAP (the Bruges Group reported in Better Off Out:Table: The Taxpayers’ Alliance: p.5
22 5. The EU is keeping the developing world poor Exports from developing countries are effectively blocked off by EU tariffs and subsidies.Excess agricultural produce in the EU is often dumped in Africa.E.g. Sugar – The EU has among the world’s highest sugar production costs, yet it is the world’s biggest producer of white sugar.Point 1: - agricultural protectionism and subsidies and free trade within the EU make it difficult for poorer countries to trade with the EU-European cows receive two Euros a day in subsidies – more than half the world’s population has to live on each day.-Where the EU gives aid, it is inefficiently allocated and often also tied to the exchange of goods/services. E.g. the EU Water Initiative (EUWI) failed to provide water or sanitation to a single person in its first 4 yrs!Point 2: This disadvantages local producers.Point 3: - sugar – high subsidies mean the EU is the world’s largest exporter of white sugar, disadvantaging producers in poorer countries who can produce it much cheaper but are denied access to the markets. Developing countries are hit by: restricted market access; undercut export opportunities; undermined value-added processing, and depressed and destabilised world prices (Oxfam, The Great EU Sugar ScamAdditional info: Where the EU gives aid, it is inefficiently allocated and often also tied to the exchange of goods/services. E.g. the EU Water Initiative (EUWI) failed to provide water or sanitation to a single person in its first 4 yrs!World white sugar exports: percentage share of the market (2001)
23 EnlargementOn 1 May 2004, 10 new countries, mainly in Central and Eastern Europe, joined the EU.Romania and Bulgaria joined on 1 January 2007.Yet the structure of the EU was built for 6, not 27, member states. It needs reforming.Average GDP per head in the 10 Member States that joined in 2004 was just 52.9% of the EU-15.The ‘Copenhagen Criteria’ has been applied too loosely and was not met by Romania and Bulgaria prior to accession. Turkey is even further off.Enlargement has raised many issues regarding immigration to the UK, the response to which has been chaotic.Point 1: Final decision on accession is made by the European Commission. EU citizens get no say.Point 5: Copenhagen Criteria: These are the rules set down in the 2002 Copenhagen Accords that must be met before a country can join the EU, including ‘Europeanness’, democracy, respect for human rights and a viable market economy.-When the Commission reached its final decision to admit Romania and Bulgaria, it ordered both governments to fight corruption and continue reforms in their justice systems and agriculture.-In 2008, €220m EU funding to Bulgaria was halted due to its large amount of organised crime and high-level corruption. Question marks also remain about the fairness of Bulgaria’s judicial system, despite constitutional changes to try and combat this.-Romania faced criticism as it has reforms outstanding in its agriculture and taxation systems.-If the two countries continue to fail to show progress, the Commission could impose further penalties.Lowering standards may be seen as lowering ‘EU values’ – whatever they may be!Bulgaria and Romania are both in the process of applying for entrance into the Schengen Agreement but this has not been without obstacle.Point 6: EU Enlargement has produced huge migration:Between 2004 and 2009, net migration from Eastern Europe totalled 304,000Many of these migrants came from Poland.The average annual Long-Term International Migration (LTIM) inflow of EU citizens (excluding British citizens) for was around 169,000, compared to 66,000 duringNumbers of EU immigrants did drop during 2008 but began increasing again in (all figures from the Migration Observatory at University of Oxford:-Migrants are more economically active than the domestic workforce and have put c.£240m into the UK economy. (source:EUROSTAT, LFS Q2, HOWEVER – in 2011 the National Institute of Economic and Social Research concluded that the huge influx of Eastern European migrants to the UK since the 2004 enlargement did not significantly effect the UK GDP (FT April-But social cohesion is a huge problem: There were 42,057 claims for benefits made by the 427,000 people from Eastern Europe who have registered for the Workers Registration Scheme between
24 Immigration Enlargement has resulted in huge migration: Between 2004 and 2009, net migration from Eastern Europe totalled 304,000Many came from Poland.June : 100,000 people migrated from Central and Eastern Europe to the UKNumbers dropped during 2008, but increased again from 2010Migrants are more economically active than the domestic workforce and have put c.£240m into the UK economy.But social cohesion is a huge problem.Point 1: EU Enlargement has produced huge migration:Between 2004 and 2009, net migration from Eastern Europe into the UK totalled 304,000Many of these immigrants came from Poland.The average annual Long-Term International Migration (LTIM) inflow of EU citizens (excluding British citizens) for was around 169,000, compared to 66,000 duringNumbers of EU immigrants did drop during 2008 but began increasing again in (all figures from the Migration Observatory at University of Oxford:Point 2: -Migrants are more economically active than the domestic workforce and have put c.£240m into the UK economy. (source:EUROSTAT, LFS Q2,HOWEVER – in 2011 the National Institute of Economic and Social Research concluded that the huge influx of Eastern European migrants to the UK since the 2004 enlargement did not significantly affect the UK GDP (FT AprilPoint 3: -But social cohesion is a huge problem: There were 42,057 claims for benefits made by the 427,000 people from Eastern Europe who have registered for the Workers Registration Scheme between
25 Better off out?The EU should stop the tide of regulation and focus on where it can make real changes: free trade and CAP reform.The EU must return Member States’ power to revoke legislation.“The EU is making us poorer, less democratic and less free.” – Daniel Hannan MEPPoint 1: (Office of National Statistics reported in Telegraph: March 2011)In 2010 the UK contributed £9.2bn, equivalent to £230 for each family – a 74% increase in the £5.3bn contribution in (Office of National Statistics reported on Better off Out:Point 2: EU regulations from 1999 to 2010 cost UK households £4912 (Better off out:Daniel Hannan MEP quote: Better Off Out“Europe should do less, but do it better!” – Jacques Delors, 1992