The surprise revelation that the UK would be paying a surcharge to the EU budget of €2.1 billion sent Prime Minister Cameron into a rampage. How could this misunderstanding have arisen, as the resources mechanism of the EU budget uses a rather rigid method of calculation agreed by all member states? In this Commentary, CEPS budget specialist Jorge Núñez Ferrer has adopted a Q&A format to provide a straightforward technical explanation of how the surcharge came about in an attempt to dispel the Machiavellian phantasies it has inspired in journalists and eurosceptics alike.
Jorge Núñez Ferrer is Associate Researcher at CEPS. See companion Commentary by the author and Daniel Gros, “An appalling way to behave”, 4 November 2013 (http://www.ceps.eu/node/9779).