Open Europe Blog

Quote of last week

“The EU can’t increase its budget, but has to use its resources better than it has done so far… We need to re-think of the use of EU funds. Calculating what share of each country’s contribution comes back in the form of European subsidies is no longer fit for purpose. This ultimately leads to aberrations such as EU subsidies going to day-spas or romantic hotels. We are all familiar with absurd examples of this type of subsidies in our own country. With European taxpayers’ money, we must achieve better efficiency quotas and demand better results.”

– German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle speaking in the Bundestag on Friday.

Hear hear! As we have flagged up repeatedly, because of its flawed design, the EU budget is particularly prone to mis-allocation of resources and poor project selection.

Seriously, for how much longer can Europe afford having such an economically irrational policy at the heart of its common project?

Incidentally, if you’re around Brussels tomorrow, we’re organising an event on this very question, i.e. on how the EU budget should be reformed.

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