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Costs of the EU and of the European Commission - summary of answers to recent media questions
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Published on 21-10-11

The administration budget for the European Commission in 2011 is EUR 3.3 billion including salary costs. This is 2.3% of an overall EU budget of EUR 142 bn.

The EU's admin costs as a whole, including staff and pension costs for the Commission, the European Parliament, the Council of Ministers and all other institutions, represent under 6% of the overall EU budget. That overall EU budget in turn represents about 1% of EU GDP. 
The EU's budget for 27 Member States is less than the national budget of a single medium-sized country like the Netherlands.
The European Commission employs just under 30 000 people, including all temporary and ancillary staff - Birmingham City Council employs 60 000.
The UK's gross contribution to the EU budget in 2011 will be about EUR 13bn of which about EUR 0.3bn will go to admin costs.
The UK's so-called "net contribution "  (broadly, gross contribution minus EU funds spent in the UK) for 2009 is estimated at around EUR 1.9bn - later years depend on final figures for grants etc, not yet available. The figures vary by year depending on exchange rates and various other factors.

    Costs of the EU and of the European Commission - summary of answers to recent media questions

    Germany's net contribution in 2009 is estimated at EUR 6.4 bn and France's at EUR 5.9 bn. (P.86)

    The UK economy benefits from the single market alone to the tune of between £30 bn and £90 bn annually or between £1 100 and £3 300 per household per annum, according to the UK government - thus in 2009 outweighing the net contribution by a rough multiple of between 15 and 50.

    The UK government believes that partly through strong UK engagement at the negotiating table in Brussels, a fully completed single market could increase UK GDP by a further 7% compared to the current situation.

    Members of the European Economic Area who are not members of the EU contribute to the EU budget and are subject to single market and some other rules but unlike the UK do not have a voice in negotiations on making them.

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    Last update: 02/11/2011  |Top