By Daniel Hunter

Europe is becoming a "third world" economy, according to Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone.

In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, Ecclestone described it as a "third world" place to do business.

“Slowly but surely what I predicted about Europe is happening. What I said 10 years ago is that it would soon become a third world economy,” he said.

Over the years, F1 has been reducing the number of races held in Europe. In 1999, nearly 70% of the F1 calendar was filled with European Grand Prix.

“Europe was built on Germany and France. That’s how it all started. France is gone and Germany doesn’t look good. Even with my help they are still in trouble (referring to the £60m he paid to a Munich court to settle charges of bribery)."

Germany and France are two countries to have lost F1 races in recent years. Germany used to host the German Grand Prix and the European Grand Prix, but the European race was lost in 2007. A year later, the France Grand Prix was dropped.

It is not the first time Ecclestone has spoken out against Europe. In 2012, he said “from the moment the euro was introduced I said it was a mistake. It was a political decision where Germany and France thought they would be able to control Europe. You can’t blame them for trying. At the time it seemed a good idea.”

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