The largest contributors in relative terms are:
- Sweden: 0.50 per cent of GNP,
- Germany: 0.47 per cent of GNP,
- Netherlands: 0.44 per cent of GNP,
- Luxembourg: 0.35 per cent of GNP,
- Austria: 0.27 per cent of GNP,
- United Kingdom: 0.25 per cent of GNP.
Belgium and France are minor net contributors, according to the report.
The report "Allocation of 2000 EU Operating Expenditure by Member State" reflects the actual payments made during the financial year 2000, excluding administrative expenditure and expenditure on external policy. In 2000, total allocated operating expenditure amounted to 73.1 billion euro, which represents 87.8 per cent of total EU executed expenditure in that year.
The issue of net contributions to the EU budget is likely to start a heated debate in the context of enlargement, where Poland is expected to become the largest net beneficiary of EU funds, replacing Spain.
The German net contribution has decreased to 9.2 billion euro, which is 4 billion euro below the level in the mid-nineties. However, Germany's contribution is expected to increase after the EU's enlargement to Central and Eastern Europe.
If the first new members join the EU in 2004, they could have over 8 billion euro at their disposal, according to the Die Welt newspaper. That means that Germany's net contribution would rise to over 12 billion euro.