The European Union (EU) has recently demanded that Great Britain contribute an extra 2.1 billion euros (the equivalent of 2.7 billion U.S. dollars) to the EU budget by December 1st of this year. It’s no surprise that Britain isn’t happy, particularly since many people aren’t sure that the country will remain part of the EU past 2017 (David Cameron, the current Prime Minister of the United Kingdom) has promised a vote on the matter if he gets re-elected). But why is Britain being asked to pay more money than other countries in Europe? After all, they haven’t taken the same incentives (primarily from the Central Bank) as Britain has and have allowed their economies to slump. The EU’s request has also contributed to building more resentment towards other European countries, such as France, that have “lagged on structural reforms to reinvigorate their economies” and are now being asked to pay less to the EU budget due to the poor state of their economy (Bloomberg Business). Cameron has requested an emergency meeting with the EU finance ministers to debate this case. His current stand is that the money will not be paid by December 1st, but that does not rule out the possibility that Britain will pay the due at a later date. The 20 percent increase in money that Britain has been asked to pay to the EU is no doubt due to the country’s success in growing its economy, but what this will mean for Britain’s continued involvement with the European Union remains to be seen. More information should be coming to the forefront soon, but until then, we’ll be left wondering what Britain will choose to do – and what the consequences of that decision will be.
Matlack, Carol. “Fork Over an Extra $2.7 Billion to Brussels? No Way, Says Britain.” Bloomberg Business Week. Bloomberg, 24 Oct. 2014. Web. 28 Oct. 2014.