It is expected to provide the first clue as to whether his European negotiation drive will have any chance of delivering a genuinely new relationship with the EU, or will it simply be a charade designed to keep the country tied to Brussels. George Osborne fleshed out some of the Government’s renegotiation demands during his visit to Berlin this week.
The Chancellor expanded on his desire to cut regulations on business, end the EU’s commitment to “ever closer union” and provide some protection for Britain from being bullied by the mass alliance of eurozone countries. But the concern is growing at Westminster that Mr Cameron and Mr Osborne have had little to say in recent months about repatriating powers from Brussels and, in particular, regaining control of our borders.
Yet Government officials have been looking at the effect of recent European Court of Justice rulings that suggest benefit bans of up to six months may not be discriminatory