No to extra taxes from Brussels

19 October 2010

No to extra taxes from Brussels

The European Commission today presented its plans for the EU budget. Leaked information had already revealed that the Commission's idea is to demand a fixed percentage of VAT receipts in order to make it less dependent on the member states for its income. The SP is completely opposed to this new tax, as SP member of Parliament and European affairs spokesman Harry van Bommel explains: "As things stand the Commission is still obliged to pass the hat around the member states and therefore to present convincing arguments as to why it should have more money. Obviously they'd like to see an end to this, but that isn't a good plan."

Dennis de JongSP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong is critical above all of the European Commission's assumption that it spends money efficiently and therefore in a way which represents added value. "This same Commission acknowledged earlier this year that at least 5% - a euro in every twenty – of its expenditure was unlawful," he points out. "This amounts to €7.5 billion of taxpayers' money. Not only that, but on countless occasions EU subsidies have been misspent. The Commission should first of all put a stop to the pumping back and forth between Brussels and the member states of EU money before there can be any talk of its spending being efficient."

Van Bommel and De Jong are more positive regarding the Commission's view that the European Union should lay more emphasis in its spending on results, saying that it wants to examine with a critical eye the administrative expenditure of the EU itself. The Commission's view, also, that this time of crisis is not the time to ask the member states to increase their spending when they are being called upon to exercise fiscal discipline demonstrates that its understanding is improving. However, says Dennis de Jong, "if you put all of this together it ought to mean that the EU should be spending money less quickly, but that's just what the Commission's proposal would not mean." The SP will therefore be keeping a close and critical eye on the further development of the EU's budget plans. EU.

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