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Debates
Thursday, 18 May 2017 - Strasbourg Revised edition

Agreement between the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway on an EEA Financial Mechanism 2014-2021 (A8-0072/2017 - David Borrelli)
MPphoto
 

  Daniel Hannan (ECR). – Madam President, I wonder what the case is for these countries to be making payments to less developed parts of the EU. I do not think we can make a moral case for it: there are many more deserving parts of our planet than EU Member States. If you have extra money to give away you should surely be giving it to the places where it will be most put to use. It is bizarre that we are giving more to wealthy European farmers than to poor African farmers.

Perhaps the case is supposed to be economic, but if it is then I submit it is not working terribly well. If grants from the EU raised a country’s economic standard, then Greece would be the wealthiest country in Europe, having been the biggest per capita recipient of funds since 1981. There would be arguments in this House about whether the Greeks should continue to bail out the Germans.

In fact, the best way for us to raise the standards of living of any country is simply to allow them to engage in global markets, and that means looking beyond Europe and raising our eyes to more distant horizons.

 
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