Danes to get €134 million cash-back on their EU contribution

The Danes are set to get a yearly rebate of 1 billion Danish crowns (€134 million), the country’s first, according to the newest EU budget proposal by European Council president Herman Van Rompuy.

Danish prime minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt
Danish prime minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt

The Danes are set to get a yearly rebate of 1 billion Danish crowns (€134 million), the country's first, according to the newest EU budget proposal by European Council President Herman Van Rompuy.  

Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt had in autumn indicated she would be willing to veto the EU budget if her country didn't get a rebate in the new EU budget for 2014-2020. Denmark has for years been unhappy with the rebate system, claiming that the country finances other member states' rebates.

Other EU states with big net contributions such as Britain, Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands and Austria already get rebates.

In October 2012, Thorning-Schmidt told the Danish parliamentary committee on European affairs: "We are going to get our rebate, and if we don't get our rebate, then we will have to use the veto. It's very, very simple."

The rebate has been a big issue for the Danish red-green coalition government as it has already included the anticipated rebate in its tax reform plans.

Janusz Lewandorski, the EU Commissioner for financial programming and the budget, had previously told the Danish newspaper Politiken in January that Denmark was the second richest country in the EU "so in my book you are not entitled to a rebate," Lewandorski said.

Last weekend, the Danish newspapers Politiken and Berlingske Tidende revealed that Van Rompuy had already offered a rebate between €80.4 million and €107.2 million, but Thorning-Schmidt had rejected the offer.

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