BRITAIN’s lack of influence over Brussels laws has been laid bare after a new report revealed the UK is the most outvoted country in the EU.
A study of voting records in the EU Council, made up of Government ministers from each member state, since 2004 has revealed Britain is increasingly on the losing side when it comes to decision-making on EU legislation.
The research by VoteWatch Europe — an independent Brussels-based thinktank — also found Britain has seen its influence in the European Parliament diminished in recent years, with the UK’s MEPs less likely to be on the winning side than any other member state.
Brexit campaigners said the report rubbished Prime Minister David Cameron’s claim Britain must remain in the EU in order to carry on “influencing the decisions that affect us”.
The VoteWatch Europe study found that during EU Council votes between 2009-15 “the UK government was on the losing side a far higher proportion of times than any other EU government”.
According to the research — which classed both a No vote and an abstention as opposition to EU Council proposals — during those six years Britain was on the losing side more than one in ten times (12.3 per cent).
This marked a jump in the UK’s number of losing votes from the 2004-2009 period, when Britain accepted more than 97 per cent of EU laws — at a time when the last Labour Government was in power.
Since 2009 to 2015 Britain has agreed with more than 86 per cent of EU laws.
Over the last six years the UK’s main allies in the EU Council were found to be Sweden, the Netherlands and Denmark.
But Germany, which many eurosceptics view as dominating EU decision-making, was least likely to vote the same way as the UK.
Surprisingly Britain voted more frequently with the French government than the Irish government between 2009-15.
VoteWatch Europe also found Britain “has diminished its influence in the European Parliament in recent years” due to the fact few of its MEPs sit in the main three groups that dominate the Brussels/Strasbourg legislature.
Ukip’s victory in the last European Parliament elections in 2014 has also seen Britain elect many MEPs completely opposed to the EU.
The study revealed since 2009 British MEPs “have been less likely to be on the winning side than the MEPs from any other member state”.
Since 2004 British MEPs have been on the winning side in European Parliament votes less than three-quarters (71 per cent) of the time, compared to 93 per cent for Finland’s MEPs.
But the research did find Britain’s MEPs “have captured many powerful agenda-setting positions” such as becoming European Parliament vice-presidents, political group leaders, and chairs of important committees.
Based on the voting record of UK MEPs, the study found that without their influence in the European Parliament the EU would be likely to introduce more red tape, harmonise Europe’s tax systems, increase levies on financial transactions and demand bigger EU budget contributions from member states.
After securing his EU renegotiation deal in February, the Prime Minister told MPs: “We will be in the parts of Europe that work for us, influencing the decisions that affect us, in the driving seat of the world’s biggest single market and with the ability to take action to keep our people safe.”
But leading eurosceptics pointed to the VoteWatch Europe study as evidence Britain actually has little clout in Brussels.
Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg told Express.co.uk: “This report comes as no surprise.
“The UK consistently loses in the EU because other members favour a highly regulated and protectionist economy.
“As we fail to shape Europe in our image it is better to look to the wider world where there are great opportunities for a free trading nation.”