HC Deb 04 December 1995 vol 268 cc111-2W
Rev. Ian Paisley

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how much Northern Ireland's share of the United Kingdom's payments into the European Economic Community was from 1 January 1973 to date; how much Northern Ireland's share of the receipts was for the same period; and how much of those receipts was used to offset Government expenditure in Northern Ireland. [2482]

Sir John Wheeler

It is not possible to determine Northern Ireland's actual share of the United Kingdom's contribution to the European Community because payments are made on a national and not a regional basis. Similarly, it is not possible to identify the full extent of receipts from the Community. However, a Northern Ireland attributed share of the contribution to the EC is calculated as an accounting mechanism necessary because of the operation of a separate Northern Ireland Consolidated Fund. This notional attributed share does not count as an item of expenditure within the Northern Ireland public expenditure programme and has therefore no bearing on the level of public expenditure in the Province.

Figures for the notional attribution of part of Northern Ireland's share of the United Kingdom's payments and for those areas where the receipts from the European Community's structural funds can be separately identified are as follows:

£ million
Financial year Attributed share (part) 2Identified receipts
1973–74 1 0
1974–75 6 4
1975–76 8 4
1976–77 13 16
1977–78 16 14
1978–79 24 19
1979–80 28 31
1980–81 28 44
1981–82 50 41
1982–83 66 53
1983–84 66 51
1984–85 68 58
1985–86 74 44
1986–87 62 77
1987–88 91 111
1988–89 85 96

Financial Year Attributed Share (part) 2Identified receipts
1989–90 104 95
1990–91 107 110
1991–92 100 132
1993–93 134 158
1993–94 1171 185
1994–95 1173 157
Total 1,475 1,500
1Attributed share figures for the last two years are provisional estimates which will be revised when final details of tax revenues are determined.
2This comprises total identified EC Structural Funds and, from 1994–95, Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance receipts in Northern Ireland.

All receipts represent cash additions to the recipients and are subject to normal European Community audit arrangements and the requirements of government accounting.

The overall level of receipts is taken into account in the Government's decisions on public expenditure allocations and their availability enables public expenditure to be maintained at a higher level that would otherwise be feasible.