The TUC and the EEF Have Been Consistently Wrong About the EU

european-commission

LONDON – England – The EEF’s and TUC’s claims about the European Union are completely ridiculous and misguided.

 

 

The TUC and the EEF have both been consistently wrong about the EU – most notably in their support for joining the euro. In hindsight it would have been an utter disaster for the UK economy if we’d followed their advice.

 

 

  • The EEF supported joining the single currency, claiming the UK was playing ‘Russian roulette with manufacturing jobs’ by staying out.

  • The TUC supported the single currency, claiming it would be a ‘grave error’ to stay ‘out in the cold’.

  • Seven in ten economists took the same view and said we should scrap the pound.

  • If we had followed their advice fifteen years ago, our economy would be in a disastrous condition.

  • The real risk to the economy comes from staying tied to the failing Eurozone and having to pay its bills.

  • If we Vote Leave, we can create 300,000 new jobs by taking back control over trade policy.

 

The EEF supported joining the Exchange Rate Mechanism and then the single currency, claiming the UK could become a Third World economy if it did not join.

The EEF said in 2000 of the Government’s decision not to scrap the pound immediately that: ‘The longer it goes on, the Government will just be playing Russian roulette with manufacturing jobs’.

‘The Engineering Employers’ Federation is backing the CBI’s call for the government to make a stronger case for the euro. “The government isn’t leading the debate,” said Martin Temple, EEF director-general’.

‘The Engineering Employers Federation, which represents some of Britain’s biggest businesses, is urging the Chancellor to set a date for entry to the single European currency. While welcoming last Monday’s Commons statement committing the Government to the principle of signing up for the euro in the next Parliament, EEF director -general Graham Mackenzie said no sensible company would devote significant resources to prepare for Emu without a more precise timetable. Mackenzie, who represents companies including GKN and Vickers, said: “We would urge the Chancellor to work with business in order to draw up a realistic convergence programme, based on a provisional date for entry”‘.

‘A campaign to stop manufacturing industry entering the “twilight zone” of a Third World economy was launched today. The Engineering Employers’ Federation published an 18-point manifesto… proposals included… Ensuring full UK involvement in European economic and monetary union including a single currency… EEF deputy director-general Peter Ball said engineering was the engine of the nation’s economic growth, but he complained that UK manufacturing was too small. “We have to change this, but time is not on our side. We have no wish to enter the twilight zone of a Third World economy”‘.

 

The TUC supported the single currency, claiming it would be a ‘grave error’ to stay ‘out in the cold’.

‘Gordon Brown, the shadow chancellor, came under pressure from the Trades Union Congress to adopt a more positive approach to the single currency’.

‘The Trades Union Congress yesterday plunged headlong into the controversy over the Government’s position on the European single currency, with John Monks, the general secretary, warning it would be a “grave error” if the Chancellor ruled out joining before the next general election’.

John Monks, the General Secretary of the TUC, said: ‘Staying out in the cold for the time being will look less and less attractive as we see the effects of the UK being excluded from the European Central Bank and the euro group of finance ministers’.

 

Seven in ten economists took the same view and said we should scrap the pound.

A poll of members of the Royal Economic Society in 1999 found that 65% of economists backed scrapping the pound. If we had followed their advice fifteen years ago, our economy would be in a disastrous condition.

Youth unemployment in Greece is 50.4%. Youth unemployment in Spain is 44.8%.

 

The real risk to the economy comes from staying tied to the failing Eurozone and having to pay its bills.

In its Article IV statement on the Eurozone published last week, the IMF stated that: ‘The medium term outlook is still weak… Productivity remains below pre-crisis levels and faces greater pressures from adverse demographics… high unemployment and debt burdens are likely to persist, leaving the euro area vulnerable to the risk of stagnation’.

The Governor of the Bank of England has also stated ‘we do think that there are risks of remaining in the European Union’, and that these manifested themselves ‘in particular, in relation to the development of the euro area’.

The former Governor of the Bank of England, Lord King of Lothbury, recently warned that the Eurozone ‘might explode’.

 

If we Vote Leave, we can create 300,000 new jobs by taking back control over trade policy.

The EU’s failure to conclude just five trade agreements with the United States, Japan, ASEAN, India and Mercosur has, according to the European Commission’s own figures, cost the UK 284,341 jobs.

The aggregate GDP of all the countries with which the EU had a trade agreement in force in January 2014 was $7.7 trillion. By contrast, the aggregate GDP of all countries with which Chile had trade agreements was $58.3 trillion. The figure for South Korea was $40.8 trillion and that for Switzerland was $39.8 trillion.

The EU has failed to negotiate a free trade agreement with China. By contrast, both Iceland (which has a population of less than half a million) and Switzerland have negotiated free trade agreements with China. Australia has done so as well. The time between New Zealand beginning negotiations for a free trade agreement with China and the agreement’s entry into force was just four years.