In an effort to inform the ‘undecided’ I will update this as the referendum approaches and regularly post this on EU related articles.
I would like the UK to leave the EU, so the facts I have included mainly debunk myths and scaremongering, but if people wish to provide information to the contrary, I will include it.
I have only included facts or material from sources trusted by both Remain and Leave camps.
WHAT DO OTHER EU CITIZENS THINK OF THE EU?
Source: European Commission Bi-Annual Survey
Five countries have more pessimists than optimists regarding the EU project
Greece - 63%
Cyprus – 58%
Austria – 56%
France – 52%
Czech Republic – 51%
Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, Latvia Slovenia and the United Kingdom are all between 45 and 50%
All member nations have at least 20% citizens pessimistic about the EU project
53% of Dutch people want a referendum
44% of Dutch people would vote Remain, 44% would vote Leave
55% of EU citizens do not trust the EU
61% of EU citizens believe their voice does not count in the EU
NORWAY / SWITZERLAND EXAMPLE DEBUNKED
Source: EFTA Secretariat Report
Between 2000 and 2013, Norway and Iceland adopted just 9% of EU legal instruments
Professor Herman Matthijs of the Free University of Brussels, like-with-like annual per capita contribution comparator:
Iceland - €50
Switzerland - €68
Norway - €107
UK - €229
Most recent surveys opposing full EU membership:
Iceland – 60%
Norway – 79%
Switzerland – 82%
Switzerland exports five times more per capita to the EU than the UK does
UK Contribution: £17.8 billion
After Rebate: £12.9 billion (£35 million per day)
The majority of the rebate comes in the form of CAP (Common Agricultural Policy) which mainly goes to global supermarkets, farmers and land owners.
Nearly £2 billion goes to private organisations – I do not know who they are.
Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite (former EU budget commissioner) quote: The Common Agricultural Policy forces consumers to pay, “two or three times more for food than we would pay without the policy”.
Additional Costs - Department for Work and Pensions statistics 2013:
EU Migrant Housing Benefit = £465 million
EU Migrant Jobseeker’s Allowance = £216 million
EU Migrant Disability Allowance= £205 million
This £886 million figure does not include the benefits (such as child benefit going to foreign based children) that relate to the Prime Minister’s “Full Access” claim
The actual cost welfare to the exchequer of EU migrants is between £1 billion and £2 billion
Influence: The ability of a country to work with others to move world policy.
Power: The ability to exert authority over other nations.
Sovereignty: The ability for a country to make all its own decisions, limited only by international law and by its own relative power in the world.
Source: EU website Research Resources
1. 13% of our statute laws are EU directives that must be turned into UK law by parliament.
2. 52,000 directives and regulations were made between 2000 and 2013. The directives become UK law the moment they are made by the EU. This is where the ambiguity lies in the area between Nick Clegg (8%) and Nigel Farage (75%) of UK laws made by the EU.
3. The discrepancy is that they do not need to be voted through by parliament. They tend to be the ones that relate to cucumbers and toasters, but also things with big impacts like the regulations on vehicles.
4. UK MEPs have 9% of the total vote on all these laws, regulations and directives.
5. The UK government has 13% of the Council of Ministers vote.
6. The UK has opposed 59 EU Directives since 1996, and has been outvoted every time.
7. An estimated 70% of decisions made in the EU Council of Ministers are already implemented before they reach the voting stage.
As a sovereignty issue, banking and City financial institutions have been affected by the following EU legislative measures:
1. The Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive
2. Short-selling ban
3. Bonus cap
4. Financial Transactions Tax
This is a speculative conclusion, but it has been said that this was a concerted effort to reduce the dominance of London in the financial markets. It may not be popular with all the British public, but it is a fact that free of the EU, an adjustment to any or all of these measures would increase tax for the exchequer, aid international competitiveness, and generally ensure the UK remained the centre of worldwide financial services.
Source: Jonathan Portes (Principal Research Fellow at the National Institute of Economic and Social Research)
1. 2010 to 2015 – Over 2 million EU citizens registered for UK national insurance numbers
2. 2010 to 2015 – Official migration figures of just over 1 million