January 30, 2009
The European Union spent €2.4bn last year on “biased information campaigns” to “promote itself and its central aim of ‘ever closer union’,” alleges a new study by Open Europe, a UK-based think tank. But the report’s findings were denied by the European Commission, which said it “makes no apologies” for supporting schemes such as the Erasmus student exchage programme.
“By promoting its policies, actions and principles, the EU serves to justify its own existence and […] cement the European Commission’s view that continued European integration is the best, or even the only, future path for progress,” according to the report.
Presenting the study , entitled ‘The hard sell: EU communication policy and the campaign for hearts and minds’, at the Brussels offices of Libertas , a European political party, on 27 January, Open Europe Director Lorraine Mullally said “much of what the Commission does is laudable, but is very specifically aimed at promoting EU integration”.