Chancellor George Osborne is to argue against paying an extra £1.7bn to the EU s at a meeting of European finance ministers in Brussels today.
The BBC reports the EU has set a deadline of 1 December for the UK to make the payment, though Prime Minister David Cameron has stated this will not be met.
The Chancellor will demand a reduction in the size of the surcharge, as well as a later deadline for any payment, but a full and final agreement is not expected to be reached today.
Separately, the Financial Times reports that Confederation of British Industry director general John Cridland has urged chief executives to stem heightened euroscepticism in the wake of the EU surcharge and Cameron’s plans to limit European migration.
Cridland says UK business leaders must learn from the Scottish referendum, and argues they must speak out to prevent the benefits of EU membership “being drowned out” by anti-immigration headlines.
He says: “It is quite odd the voice of business isn’t being heard in the debate about freedom of movement – it expects the CBI to do the heavy lifting.”