David Cameron has insisted he "made a real difference" in EU budget negotiations despite criticism that he has failed to prevent any increase for next year.
The Prime Minister claimed victory in his bid to limit the rise for 2011 to 2.9%, despite previously saying he wanted to freeze or cut the budget.
He said he had managed to sign up 12 other heads of government to a letter rejecting a proposal for the budget to rise by almost 6%.
At a press conference at the end of the European Council gathering in Brussels, Mr Cameron said the 6% proposal was "dead".
"The 2011 budget was not on the agenda for this Council," he said. "We put it on the agenda, we persuaded other countries to reject that 6% increase. Britain has made a real difference."
A 2.9% increase is expected to see Britain's contribution to the EU budget grow by about £400 million a year.
Tory right-winger Lord Tebbit has described Mr Cameron's agreement to the rise as a "Vichy-style" betrayal.
But the Prime Minister maintained that he had gained support for a position that would save UK taxpayers money. He said: "Three days ago, there was little focus on the EU budget and the need to protect our taxpayers. Britain has helped to put that vital issue on the agenda.
"Just as at home we inherited finances that were a complete mess, so too in Brussels we have inherited a budget deal completely out of touch with the situation we face across Europe. I believe that as a result of Britain's intervention the spotlight has now shifted to reining in the excesses of the EU budget.
"But I'm absolutely clear that Britain's national interest and our highest priority in Europe must lie in protecting British taxpayers from reckless spending in Europe. At a time when we are making painful decisions at home to put our economy back on track I will now allow Brussels to derail us."