Today, a leaked EU document crushed David Cameron’s hopes for an important economic portfolio for his EU Commission nominee, Lord Hill. It will come as a shock to some, given the claims in today’s Telegraph that Lord Hill could get a junior economic post. This would have been bad enough. The truth is far worse.
The document dated 2nd September, is a draft assigning portfolios to commissioners in President Jean-Claude Juncker’s ‘cabinet’. It indicated Lord Hill will receive the portfolio of Energy and Climate Change. Hill will not even be the most senior Commissioner in his area, and will be reporting to a newly appointed Vice President for Energy Union, the Latvian Valdis Dombrovskis.
This is a huge diplomatic slap in the face for the Prime Minister, doubtlessly due to his own opposition to Juncker’s appointment. Cameron’s refusal to promote positive discrimination by replacing Lord Hill with a woman likely didn’t help either.
‘Cast-Iron’ Dave was pushing hard for Juncker to grant Lord Hill the “financial tsar” position Juncker was rumoured to be considering creating. This position, now titled Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner, will instead go to Finnish Jyrki Katainen.
If the idea of financial services being outside the hands of Britain wasn’t sufficient cause for concern, the fact it is going to Finland – a Eurozone country – reveals much about Junker’s plans for EU finance. He intends to centralise finance and prop up the Eurozone member states whilst damaging the City of London as much as possible.
Of course this document is just a snapshot of Juncker’s intentions on the 2nd of September. Things could still change before the President announces his team next week, but we shouldn’t hold our breath.
When the official announcement comes, the Great British Public will see clear as day how little the EU values Britain and its financial sector. The only way to protect the City of London and finance across the country is to Get Britain Out of the EU as soon as possible. Undoubtedly Lord Hill’s appointment as Energy and Climate Change Commissioner can only help this cause.
Luke Stanley is a Research Assistant at Get Britain Out