Did you read that the Telegraph reports that senior European officials have predicted that David Cameron will break his promise not to transfer powers to Brussels by yielding to plans for an EU “economic government” and increased regulation of the City.
The article quotes a senior Belgian official, whose country is due to take over the EU’s rotating Presidency tomorrow, saying the Prime Minister will ultimately back down now that the election is over: “We will wait until some weeks after the elections. It is sometimes easier to discuss after elections.” The source observed that no EU agreements would ever be possible if all European leaders stuck to the “totality” of their election manifestoes, suggesting that the coalition agreement to oppose any transfer of power to the EU during this Parliament would be sacrificed. The article also notes that Belgian officials, with strong French and German support, are pushing hard to set up new EU financial supervisors to police financial markets, with the power to dictate to regulators in the City of London, saying: “It is necessary to transfer some decisions away from national to European authorities”.
The Belgian EU Presidency will also consider the issue of direct EU taxation, and quotes the government source saying: “We can also explore, for example, the financing of European projects via new sources of revenue”. The source added that new types of taxation, such as levies on financial transactions or CO2 emissions, could part fund the EU budget, saying: “Couldn’t these new types of income at least in part be channelled towards major European-level projects? This is a debate we should be holding. We shouldn’t bury everything in national budgets.”
It would be unthinkable if Cameron was to do as is being suggested. We wait to see…