Wednesday 2 April 2014

Time to Jump - Introduction

Time to Jump - Introduction

For over forty years, Britain has been a member of the European Union (EU) and its forerunner organisations, the Common Market, European Economic Community (EEC) and European Community (EC). In that time, the protectionist pressures of the 1960s and 1970s which drove the UK to enter the EU Customs Union have been much reduced and the world environment has become more inclined to free trade, thanks primarily to the World Trade Organisation (WTO), formerly the General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs (GATT). In the same period the world has changed dramatically with developing nations such as India, China and Brazil now destined to become some of the largest economies in the world, challenging the USA and Japan. The UK now exports more to the Rest of the World than the EU, and the EU’s share of world wealth has plummeted.
The debate on British membership of the European Union has reached dramatic levels. The Conservatives have pledged an In/Out Referendum on the EU issue if successful in the 2015 General Election, a referendum that will give the British people a clear choice between a Renegotiated In or an Out, and a bill to enable a Referendum was introduced as a private members bill but with Conservative 3 line whip support in July 2013. It is likely that Labour and also the Liberal Democrats, who offered an In/Out EU Referendum in their last manifesto, will seek to match this pledge. But the issue has become the choice between a ‘Renegotiated In’ and a ‘Negotiated Out’. This book presents the case for a Negotiated Out.
The book is a much fuller account of a booklet I first produced in October 2011 entitled ‘the Ultimate Plan B’ in conjunction with The Freedom Association (and updated courtesy of the ECR Group), which sought to set out a ‘Positive Vision’ of an independent Britain outside the European Union, and to dispel many of the myths about withdrawal. This booklet was well received. To a produce a booklet that many MPs carried around in their pockets was a sign of success.
The Ultimate Plan B called for a sensible, rational debate on options outside European Union membership in order to inform the debate. It also argued for an In/Out Referendum on the EU issue. I am personally delighted, and feel vindicated in my difficult decision to return to the Conservative fold from UKIP, by the Prime Minister David Cameron’s courageous and clear offer of an In/Out EU Referendum after the 2015 General Election, should the Conservatives win that election.

from "Time to Jump" by David Campbell Bannerman MEP
Getyour copy HERE

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