Businesses Back In/Out referendum on the EU

10000 words for a cabbage

According to a recent article from City Wire over 20 leading economists have called for ‘substantial change’ in the UK’s relationship with the EU, backing calls for an In/Out referendum.

Here’s the text of the letter, published in the Daily Telegraph, the emphasis is mine.

Dear Sirs,

As economists and economic commentators we are writing to add our voices to the growing demands for a new relationship between Britain and the European Union and to express our support for an In/Out referendum.

For too long the debate over Britain’s EU membership has been characterised by half-truths and outright fabrications. The wholly misleading claim that millions of jobs would be lost if the UK were to leave the EU has been comprehensively disproven and refuted.

Research shows that British business wants and needs a substantial change in our relationship with the EU. The Prime Minister’s own Red Tape Task Force has warned that EU red tape is holding back job creation and business expansion. However, before thinking about leaving the EU, we must see if the British Government can first secure better terms of membership. But if the negotiations do not deliver, there is nothing to fear from leaving.

The UK’s future prosperity increasingly depends on its ability to trade with the whole world, not just its European neighbours. In 1980 the EU accounted for over 30 per cent of world GDP, today that figure is less than 19%. The share of UK exports to the rest of the EU has fallen by 10 per cent in the last ten years alone. We need to move beyond a 20th Century economic mind set and be free to develop our links with the rising economies outside Europe.

Just as “little Englanders” are wrong to argue for protectionism, so too are “little Europeans” who only focus on Britain’s trade with its next door neighbours. We need a global vision, a vision that looks beyond the limits of Europe and sees the opportunities that the wider world offers.

As the picture at the top shows;

  • Pythagorean Theorem – 24 words
  • Lord’s Prayer – 66 words
  • US Declaration of Independence – 1300 words
  • US Constitution – 7818 words
  • EU direction on the sale of cabbage – 26,911 words

It’s time to ditch the red tape, ditch the restrictions and open our minds to the prosperity on offer from leaving the EU and re-joining the World.


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