The Ranting Kraut

19.3.2006 – 27.9.2010

The UK Budget is none of the EU’s Business

Posted by rantingkraut on June 8, 2010

The EU commission apparently plans to vet the UK’s budget before it is presented to the commons. Given that the UK is not part of the euro zone, it is not clear what the economic rationale for this measure is supposed to be. It is clear however, why such a gesture would be important to someone who ultimately wants to make the transition from a common market to a federal state.

The telegraph reports that “Mr Van Rompuy and the European Commission have tabled plans that will require all of Europe’s governments to discuss their budget plans with other EU finance ministers and officials before they [are] presented to national parliaments.” (source)

Mr Van Rompuy, by the way, was prime minister of Belgium from 2008-2009. We remember that Belgium’s public debt fell (!) to levels of around 84% of GDP when Van Rompuy was budget minister before rising again to over 90% while he was heading the government. He sure has experience of managing high levels of public debt. This leaves the wider question of whether Belgium’s political establishment is in a position to lecture Britain -or Spain for that matter- on fiscal prudence.

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