THE PLANNED first ever cut in the EU budget will save Britain £3.5bn over the next five years, new official forecasts revealed yesterday.
The reduced multi-annual fiscal framework cuts the UK’s bill by £600m in 2013-14, £1.4bn in 2014-15 and another £1.5bn over the following three years.
Cameron had faced a tough battle to reduce Brussels’ spending, facing intense pressure from his own MPs as well as the Labour party.
He successfully struck an alliance with other EU leaders to reduce the budget, arguing it is unfair for national governments going through austerity programmes at home to be forced to pay more to Brussels.
The Budget hails this as solid evidence of “the government’s commitment to reduce the deficit.”
But the struggle is not yet over as members of the European Parliament want to renegotiate the deal to give the EU a bigger spending pot.
And the UK will also not see all of the benefit of the deal. The weak pound is forecast to add an extra £1.3bn to the payments from 2015-16 through to 2017-18, Office for Budget Responsibility figures showed yesterday.