The Conservatives have pledged that, if they win the next election, they will hold a referendum in 2017 on whether or not the UK should remain in the EU. The Prime Minister has also said that he will renegotiate the terms of UK membership and push for reforms to the EU to cut administrative costs, reduce intervention and make the EU more competitive. We are likely to be bombarded with arguments for and against membership over the coming months.
In a contribution to the debate, the CBI has just published research showing that membership of the EU benefits the UK by up to £78 billion per year – £3000 per household. It also conducted a poll of its members which shows that the vast majority (78%, including 77% of SMEs) want to remain part of the EU, believing that membership brings net benefits to their business and the economy more generally.
However, as the Director-General of the CBI, John Cridland, said:
But the EU isn’t perfect and there is a growing unease about the creeping extension of EU authority. Europe has to become more open, competitive and outward looking if we are to grow and create opportunities and jobs for all our citizens.
The following articles and documents look at the CBI’s arguments.
Britain must stay in the European Union, says CBI Independent, Margareta Pagano (4/11/13)
Britain must stay in EU, says business lobby group The Guardian, Katie Allen (3/11/13)
EU membership: what the CBI have said The Telegraph, Rebecca Clancy (4/11/13)
CBI says staying in EU ‘overwhelmingly’ best for business BBC News (4/11/13)
In with reform or out with no influence – CBI chief makes case for EU membership CBI Press Release (4/11/13)
Our Global Future: Factsheets CBI
- Distinguish between a free trade area, a customs union, a common market and a monetary union. Which is the EU?
- Itemise the arguments for and against membership of the EU.
- What types of reform to the EU are being advocated by the CBI?
- What factors will determine the negotiating power of the UK government with other EU governments?
- How is greater fiscal integration in the eurozone likely to affect the case for and against EU membership for the UK?