How much does membership of the EU cost the UK

Being a member of the EU costs the UK money, by way of a membership fee, but (arguably) also creates jobs, trade and investment.

According to a UK Parliament research briefing entitled

EU referendum: UK proposals, legal impact of an exit and alternatives to membership,

published on February 12 2016 and held in the House of Commons library

There is no definitive study of the economic impact of the UK’s EU membership or the costs and benefits of withdrawal. Many of the costs and benefits are subjective or intangible and a host of assumptions must be made to reach an estimate.

While the actual economic costs and benefits may be difficult to calculate at least we know what we actually pay for membership, or do we ?

For example, read the explanation found at

The UK’s EU membership fee

which attempts to make some sense from the different sources such as the Treasury, ONS and Europes own data from the European Commission (http://ec.europa.eu/budget/figures/2007-2013/index_en.cfm).

The BBC website also has a breakdown of the UK’s net contribution in 2015
http://www.bbc.co.uk/guides/zgjwtyc#zct3wxs

Overall, through these source and others, there appears to be a consensus that the UK’s contribution in 2015, can be broken down as follows:

Amount that we should pay into the EU: £18bn

less the UK rebate 1 : £5bn

less EU payments to the UK: £4.5bn

leaving a net contribution of £8.5bn

Assuming these numbers are accurate lets look at them further

£8.5bn is actually £8,500,000,000

which works out at over 23 million pounds a day

or almost 1 million pounds an hour

(It is also worth mentioning, as a comparison, that total Public Spending in the UK in 2015 totalled around £748 billion so that payments to the EU represent approximately 1% of this figure

http://www.ukpublicspending.co.uk/spending_chart_2005_2019UKb_F0t).


Update 14/04/2016

In a recently published research briefing

http://researchbriefings.parliament.uk/ResearchBriefing/Summary/SN06455

there are details of the UK’s contributions to the EU budget from 2009 to 20015

UKContributions

A copy of the document can be obtained from

http://researchbriefings.files.parliament.uk/documents/SN06455/SN06455.pdf

Notes:

  1. The rebate was negotiated by British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in 1984 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UK_rebate