Letter: EU debate -the threats and opportunities

The CBI is the voice of the majority of its 190,000 British member organisations.
The CBI is the voice of the majority of its 190,000 British member organisations.

Sir Greg Knight claims that the CBI is “the voice of Brussels” and implies that it is in the pocket of the EU.

This is clearly nonsense; the CBI is the voice of the majority of its 190,000 British member organisations, who employ around seven million people in the UK generating billions for the UK economy.

It so happens that 77 per cent of those member organisations think it would be better for them and by implication the UK, if we stay in the EU.

The EU does pay the CBI about £150,000 each year to conduct industry surveys for the EU and participate in EU economic forums. This represents less than one per cent of their annual income, which doesn’t by any stretch of the imagination put them in the pockets of Brussels.

By comparison, Nigel Farage gets a similar amount in salary and expenses from the EU, virtually all his income, and this doesn’t appear to have influenced him to argue for Britain to stay in the EU!

Sir Greg has previously issued anti-EU sound bites that, like his CBI comment, do nothing to help inform rational decision making by East Yorkshire voters on this important and complex issue. We need to get beyond the sensationalist myths about loss of sovereignty, uncontrolled immigration, silly EU regulations and undemocratic processes.

The EU is currently facing a period of economic and political instability with uncertain outcomes; the tension between the EU and Russia poses further risks. Whether we vote to remain or leave, Europe poses both economic and political opportunities and threats to the UK.

It would be useful to hear from our MP how he thinks we should deal with the immediate economic uncertainty and huge cost of changing UK laws, systems and processes following a BREXIT vote and more precisely what long term advantages we would get. Also, how he thinks we should deal with the Europe problem that will not go away if we leave the EU.

Ged Leach

St Helens Road,

Pocklington