Details of the vast amounts of taxpayers’ money the European Union spends promoting itself have been exposed in a new booklet by UKIP Deputy Leader Paul Nuttall MEP.
He says the publication offers voters a more balanced view of how cash is spent on pro-EU propaganda by Brussels bureaucrats.
One example in the booklet – entitled Big Spenders, and available as a free download – is the EU’s decision to build a £137 million so-called “European House of History”. Mr Nuttall, MEP for the North West of England, described the plan as “a massive folly”.
He said: “This European House of History is a massive folly aimed at promoting an awareness of European identity. The problem is the ‘history’ only begins after 1945 following the Second World War – or the European Civil War as it will be described, because MEPs disagreed on every significant historical event in the last 200 years.
“It is another example of how the Eurocrats’ total indifference to the austerity cuts, which have brought countries such as Greece to their knees and caused misery to countless millions, knows no bounds. They throw money around like confetti, but with member states having to hand over vast sums to be in this club, they are arrogantly impervious to criticism.
“The UK alone has to pay £55 million a day to be a member, so no wonder the EU can afford to spend billions on self-promotion – otherwise known as propaganda.”
Other vanity projects highlighted in the booklet include an £18 million visitors’ centre in Brussels, which received fewer tourists last year than Keswick’s Pencil Museum.
Mr Nuttall said the publication is about “extravagance, waste and propaganda” in Brussels, and points out that the EU has not had its accounts signed off for nearly 20 years.
He added: “Few people know a lot about the EU and its workings and I have put this booklet together to explain the basics in layman’s terms.
“It is vital that the public understands European Union spending ahead of the upcoming referendum.”
Also in the booklet is information about the estimated £928 million cost of holding parliamentary sessions in the EU’s “second seat” in Strasbourg, France, between 2014 and 2020.
It highlights that the 540-mile round trip from Brussels to Strasbourg each month makes a mockery of the EU’s claim to be green.
Mr Nuttall said: “The monthly greenhouse gas emissions produced by the trip just one way by bureaucrats, MEPs and staff is equivalent to 13,000 round-trip flights between London to New York.
“Cutting back on just one month’s travel would save in the region of £12.7 million and 1,600 tonnes of CO2 emissions.
“Ironically we are actually at risk of the lights going out to conserve energy – all so that the UK can meet EU emissions targets.”
Big Spenders can be downloaded for free by clicking on the booklet image above or by clicking here.