Originally Posted by AlmightyCushion
So does this treaty bring in a financial tax or leave the door open for one?
Neither (sorry) in itself...what it does is create a tighter integration amongst signatories, who would by virtue of their tighter integration have more influence over the internal market, particularly if allowed to use the EU institutions...and some members of that tighter group would like a financial transaction tax.
The UK does not want such a tax, and does not (or the Tories don't) want tighter integration, so therefore a first step was to prevent the others, who probably would agree to closer integration, from being able to use the EU institutions, because doing so opens the door for that more tightly integrated group to implement an EU tax.
A little confusing, I'll grant you. It was something of a gamble on Cameron's part, in fact. However, it works like this (ish):
1. the UK government want the eurozone to sort itself out, and they do regard a fiscal treaty as part
of that process
2. however, any such treaty was only going to apply to the eurozone, which the UK isn't part of
3. if all the Member States signed
the Treaty, then it would be an EU Treaty, which would allow the use of the EU institutions as part of the new fiscal arrangements
4. but because the treaty only affects the eurozone, the UK would not
be using the EU institutions in that way
5. that raised the possibility that those countries (call them "the fiscal group") that had signed up to the treaty would acquire greater influence over the EU institutions than those that didn't
6. that, in turn, raises the possibility that the fiscal group would use that greater influence to push their preferred agendas inside the EU
7. ergo, deny them the use of the EU institutions by refusing to sign the treaty.
An analogy might go like this: take a tennis club. Some of the members would also like to use the premises of the club to hold political meetings. The non-political/tennis-only members fear that if the political members are allowed to use the tennis club premises for their meetings, the tennis club will eventually be reshaped to their preferences. However, they don't mind the political members being
political. The best move is to deny use of the premises
to the political members from the start.