Nice work if EU can get it! Brussels sets up £2million Barbados HQ with 39 staff to hand out hundreds of millions in grants to banana growers

  • UKIP leader Nigel Farage criticises 'luxury' office as money wasting
  • Apartments overlooking beach rented to senior officials

EU chiefs have set up an office on the Caribbean island of Barbados employing 39 staff and costing taxpayers £2 million a year.

The headquarters on the exclusive west coast of the island where pop mogul Simon Cowell holidays, has breathtaking views of the white sandy beaches and the sea.

Officials have £230 million of funding to dole out on projects which include retraining banana growers.

Idyllic: The sun-kissed Caribbean island of Barbados where the EU has set up a headquarters to hand out money for projects

Idyllic: The sun-kissed Caribbean island of Barbados where the EU has set up a headquarters to hand out money for projects

Plush office: The headquarters of the EU Commission in Barbados

Barbados branch of the European Commission.jpg

The offices on the paradise island, 4,400 miles from Brussels, have been criticised as money wasting by Nigel Farage, leader of the UK Independence Party.

Critic: UKIP leader Nigel Farage

Critic: UKIP leader Nigel Farage

He said: 'The EU fails to understand we don't want their officials sitting in luxury offices in tropical countries handing out our money on projects we have no say over.

'That includes not funding Eurocrats' luxury lifestyles when taxpayers in the UK can't afford to take their families abroad.'

Apartments with balconies overlooking the beach, have reportedly been rented out to two senior EU officials. There is a a swimming pool for residents and well-kept gardens.

At the office just outside the capital of Bridgetown, staff hand out cash for projects in 10 Caribbean countries - Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Anguilla, Monserrat, the British Virgin Islands, Grenada and Dominica.

An EU spokesman agreed the office cost £2 million a year, but said the HQ was set up on the west coast because it was close to the island's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the British High Commission.

A spokesman said: 'The EU office administers £230million in funding, like helping to build hospitals and schools for the many in the region who live in poverty.'

British holidaymaker Ken Emery, 76, told the Sun of his 'amazement' when he saw the EU had such luxurious office space so far from their own borders.

He said: 'We don’t need unelected European mandarins trying to set up their own diplomatic corps and spreading their tentacles around the globe using our money.

'It smacks of empire building by those determined to push a federal European superstate.'


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