Julian Brazier, MP for Canterbury and Whitstable, yesterday congratulated David Cameron in the House on his successful negotiations with the EU Council over its future budget and, in particular, on his achievement in getting other EU members to side with Britain’s position.
Hansard 11 Feb 2013 : Column 587
Mr Julian Brazier (Canterbury) (Con): In congratulating my right hon. Friend on this triumph, may I suggest to him that the bold bottom line on his long-term renegotiation of our role in Europe seems to have focused some minds wonderfully among other net contributors to the budget?
The Prime Minister: I thank my hon. Friend for his support. There is support in Europe for reform and for the agenda that we have set out, but we will have to work extremely hard to build alliances and win friends in order to deliver what I think would be good for Europe, but also good for Britain in Europe.
“I am delighted to see that David Cameron’s determined and unwavering stance before other EU members has begun to pay dividends. It is quite right that the EU should have to tighten its own belt at a time when all its member states are facing such difficult economic conditions.
“Frankly, I believe that other net contributors to the budget, like Germany, now realise that Britain could withdraw if there is no reform and they are anxious not to be left picking up even more of the bill.”