David Cameron’s fledgling coalition Government faced its first major test in Europe last night as European regulators looked set to push through controversial new hedge fund and private equity regulations despite fierce opposition from the new administration.
In the face of last-ditch lobbying by UK officials during the past two days, the European Parliament looks set to go ahead with a draconian crackdown on alternative investment fund managers early next week.
George Osborne, the Chancellor, is likely to be in Brussels for the agreement on the new rules, which are being driven by France and Germany. He is expected to try to extract a compromise but is resigned to the vote going against him, as he believes that the process is too far advanced for him to intervene.
Now, the EU Relations part of the agreement which brought us Our Delightful New Coalition of Doom states how we should deal with this really rather clearly.
We agree that there should be no further transfer of sovereignty or powers over the course of the next Parliament.
OK. So, if this legislation goes through the EU, it will obviously be a "further transfer of sovereignty or powers" and so Our Delightful New Coalition of Doom will...
... do what?
Now, my bet is that they will sit back and take it. Does anyone disagree...?
* Obviously, this should be "in the EU, ruled by the EU".