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'Blinded by arrogance!' EU division laid bare in extraordinary attack on Brussels by MEP


Derk Jan Eppink predicted tomorrow’s European Council meeting would fail to agree on the deal, which he said failed adequately to tackle the EU’s underlying problems. Mr Eppink, whose country is one of the so-called “frugal four”, along with Denmark, Sweden and Austria, previously outlined his concerns about the proposals in the European Parliament last month, specifically the worry that two-thirds of the money would come in the form of non-repayable grants, and could therefore trigger high levels of public spending in the south of the bloc, particularly Spain, and Italy, whose respective Prime Ministers Pedro Sanchez and Giuseppe Conte, will both attend the two-day summit.

He told Express.co.uk: “The plan proposed by the European Commission does not offer any long term solutions.

“It is the typical EU mantra whereby creating more debt is seen as a solution for the economic and political problems we face. But it is not.

“The Recovery Package does not tackle the underlying problems we face in the EU and eurozone today.”

Mr Eppink, vice-chairman of the European Conservatives and Reformists group in the Parliament, described the EU as an economic and monetary union with incompatible economies supervised by an “overarching, ever expanding bureaucracy”.

He said: “The EU sees itself as an example for the world to follow.

“It is blinded by arrogance and tends to overlook its own shortcomings. Just like Icarus.

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Mr Eppink added: “In the meantime, we see that other European countries desperately need reforms in other to remain competitive in the future.

“The plan by the commission does not address these issues at all.”

Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel has already admitted there is no guarantee the two-day European Council summit, at which leaders from the EU27 will consider the proposals, will reach an agreement.

Mr Eppink agreed, saying: “I think there won’t be a deal this Friday.

“Besides the fact that an agreement on the conditions for the grants/loans is still far of, I also think the last word on the ‘rule of law’ discussion is still to be said.

“I think Poland and Hungary are not happy with the EU interfering in their national political sphere.

“The Netherlands is not the only country critical on the EU.”

And he warned increasing numbers of people in the Netherlands were becoming disenchanted with the EU.

Mr Eppink explained: “I believe the pandemic showed that in times of crisis, people tend to fall back on their national governments to take action.

“For many people in the Netherlands, the European Union is seen as a distant bureaucracy only meddling with national affairs it should never have been involved with in the first place. I can hardly prove them wrong.”


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