The 23rd June 2016 is a going to be a great day, the sun will be shining, hopefully maybe I shouldn’t be so optimistic, and we’ll be listening to the likes of Coldplay and Muse in the rolling hills of Glastonbury. But there’s another important date this day, one that determines our future of whether or not we should stay in the EU. But don’t worry if you’re in Glastonbury, because it’s more than likely we will have to endure not just one but two EU referendums.
But why should we stay in the EU?
Well as Brits, we love to travel! Some people like it so much they never come back! In fact, 1.4 million British people live abroad in the EU, and more than 14,500 UK students took part in the EU’s student exchange scheme in 2012-2013. Driving licenses issues in the UK are also valid throughout the EU, which can be pretty helpful. Remaining in the EU gives us more freedom to work and study abroad and provides easy travel.
We are also stronger together. The EU has 28 democracies and is the world’s biggest market, we are stronger when we work together. Britain is represented in many international organisations giving Britain a wider and stronger influence than it would if we were alone. The EU has played a major role in climate, development and world trade.
Also the EU buys a substantial amount of UK exports, 50% of our goods and then 40% of our services. Over 300,000 Britain companies and 74% of British exporters operate in other EU markets.
Plus, we have access to the single market, which gives British business access to the entire of the EU and its 500 million consumers. Free trade is one of the most powerful ways of improving the wealth of the nation.
Also many people believe that the EU membership is expensive, but it’s not as much as some of you may think! Our annual budget contribution, after taking account of money transferred back to the UK, is £8.3 billion. That’s around 0.5% of our GDP, or £130 per person. That is half of your Netflix membership fee a year, therefore EU is greater than Netflix.
We all love a good holiday, don’t we? Britain isn’t so bad for prices, we enjoy lower phone roaming charges, lower credit card fees, cheaper flights like going from London to Berlin for around £25, and you receive good compensation when flights are delayed or cancelled. These benefits cannot be achieved by Britain alone.
We have a stronger influence from within. If we left the EU, we’d find ourselves opening up to our markets more to the world’s big economies, than they would be opening theirs to us. We’d typically have to play by their rules, whereas at the moment and how it stands we influence the EU’s product regulations, which then have a chance of becoming global standards. If we were alone we’d have to negotiate with the EU, whose economy would be six times the size after we quit. If we stay, we can use the EU’s influence to open up markets elsewhere.