The impending EU referendum has evolved into a battle between the establishment, that intends to maintain the status quo by supporting EU membership, and those who are disillusioned with the EU and wish to leave. The Remain campaign is resorting to desperate scare tactics by rallying countless significant names behind its campaign. The Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, is the latest to suggest that leaving the EU would ultimately trigger another recession. As Iain Duncan Smith suggested on BBC Sunday Politics: “All these claims are based on pure speculation.” It is time that the economic myths peddled by Remain are shattered, immediately.
The Remain campaign and many in the establishment inaccurately claim that Brexit would endanger jobs and trade. They suggest that the EU would respond by building trade barriers against Britain. Yet, all EU countries have to follow the rules of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), which prevents them from enforcing trade barriers. Britain is the fifth largest economy in the world and has a trade deficit with the EU of £61.7 billion. It is simply not in the best interests of countries like Spain and Germany to stop selling cars and holidays to Brits. The Germans sell far more to us than we do them.
It has been implied that leaving the Single Market would be an economic travesty for Britain. Yet, Norway, Liechtenstein and Iceland all chose to become members of the Single Market, despite being outside the EU. Moreover, even if we didn’t decide to remain in the Single Market, we would still be in good company. The top ten exporters to the EU are: China, Russia, the USA, Switzerland, Norway, Japan, Turkey, India, South Korea and Brazil. Only one of these countries is a member of the Single Market and six of them do not have trade deals with the EU. This shows the desperate win-at-all costs attitude of the Remain campaign, who manipulate tenuous economic assertions to bolster a dangerous myth.
Members of the Remain campaign like to say that 50% of our trade is dependent upon the EU – an exaggerated figure. In 1999, 54.7% of our international trade was with the EU. Today, that figure stands at 43%, and only 5% of British companies trade with the EU. Despite this, 100% of our businesses have to comply with EU regulations. If we left the EU, 95% of our businesses would be free from EU jurisdiction.
Yet, the most spurious claim of all is that three million jobs depend upon EU trade. The figure arose from a study conducted by the National Institute of Economic and Social Affairs in 1999. Nick Clegg, one of the most pro-European politicians in Parliament, threw this figure around to help justify the Liberal Democrats’ desire to integrate further into the EU. Nonetheless, the Institute’s Director, Martin Weale, dismissed these claims as "pure Goebbels." These jobs are dependent upon trade, not EU membership. The EU would be guilty of economic suicide if it ended the former in the event of Brexit.
Therefore, for those unsure of how Britain would cope, economically, in the event of Brexit, do not give in to the desperate scare tactics of the Remain campaign. Nothing will dramatically change if we leave. With a seat at the WTO, we will no doubt organise better trade deals for Britain instead of being tied to the failed Common Commercial Policy of the EU. Those who support Brexit are the true champions of globalisation, not the failed regionalisation of the EU that has caused abject misery across Europe.