How much will the UK have to pay this week to get some good PR on the EU rebate?

This Thursday (7 Feb) sees the next EU summit where leaders from the 27 member states will try and negotiate the budget for the next seven years.
On past form the UK will not do as well as it might. We should learn from the last time, when the UK and some others agreed quite a low limit on all the large funding programmes, only to be then outflanked by a vote to protect the Common Agricultural Policy, leaving the brunt of the cuts to fall on other programmes for urban, industrial and remote areas.
However, the risk is that there is an overwhelming PR requirement to please the tabloids and back-benchers with a good ‘saving our rebate’ story; even if the result is to receive far less than before in return for paying just a little less in. A false economy.
And worse, it is the Treasury that will pay a little less in, while it is the urban, industrial and remote corners of the UK that will then receive a lot less in regional funds in return. Hopefully though, lessons have been learnt from last time.

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