June 12 Letters: Why EU is no friend of business

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From: Mike Smith, Birkby, Huddersfield.

IN his recent column (The Yorkshire Post, June 3) Bernard Ingham asks “What exactly is Cameron seeking on his Euro-tour?” and in the same edition on the letters page, John Watson challenges the myth that continued membership of the EU is good for business. Since then, a radio pundit has just said withdrawal from the EU would inhibit growth.

EU bureaucracy has been inhibiting real wealth-creating growth for years with its endless stream of directives. I know one engineering company started by four individuals several years ago on a shoestring budget.

It went on to employ some 300 people directly and probably two or three times that number indirectly. If directive 97/23/EC had been in force at the time, that enterprise would have been killed stone dead at the first hurdle. A second example was a small company that found itself no longer able to trade within the EU, including the UK, from the day 2006/42/EC came into force because it simply did not have the resources to absorb and implement the bureaucracy.

Both the above companies continued to prosper because they had extensive markets outside the jurisdiction of EC directives. Meanwhile, our trade balance with Europe continues deeply in the red.

David Cameron could make a start by getting a mountain of industrial bureaucracy reduced. In doing so, he needs to be aware that our own civil service have gold-plated the directives far beyond what other member states consider necessary in their application. Nor does the onus for achieving a “Yes” vote at the referendum rest entirely on the shoulders of David Cameron.

The EU is currently nothing more than a corrupt monolithic expensive bureaucracy and the UK population is unlikely to vote “Yes” until it sees Brussels putting its own house in order.

From: T Marston, Lincoln.

I’VE got the solution to the EU referendum muddle that Mr Cameron has got himself in.

Fifty Conservative for Britain MPs are just the start of his troubles. They are not the only ones who refuse to wait to see what goodies, if any, he can negotiate. They do not know what his bottom line is likely to be or what his priorities are. And what’s more – does he, when questioned?

The purpose of the referendum is to discover what terms of EU membership the voters will stand for. So why doesn’t he just ask them, instead of trying to make the exercise the prerogative of his party and more particularly his own?

Drawing on his experience in public relations, he could call on his special advisers and produce a questionnaire to be completed by voters. This would then give the PM an insight into what terms the voters (including Lab, Lib Dem, Ukip and SNP) would accept.

Armed with the knowledge of the voters’ “red lines”, a meaningful question could then be drawn up with a reasonable chance of a clear response.

From: Don Burslam, Elm Road, Dewsbury Moor, Dewsbury.

D WOOD (The Yorkshire Post, June 5) expresses quite effectively a certain strand of opinion. The trouble is it represents a biased and completely mistaken view of the Lib Dems and the important role of the EU in the development of our relationship with our neighbours.

The Lib Dems took a big risk in taking a ride on the tiger of Toryism but it was a responsible decision. History will look kindly on the party’s moderating influence and we may look back with a certain nostalgia as the undiluted Tory policies start to bite. The country needs Liberal values perhaps more than ever.

On Europe, I am confident that the country will vote to stay in. The idea that the UK, perhaps without Scotland, could maintain its trading position unaffected is ludicrous. For instance, would businesses from abroad continue to invest here when we had voted for isolation? Our influence with the US would decline to a new low. The EU has brought stability to a troubled continent and will survive the irresponsible manoeuvres of its opponents.

From: Terry Duncan, Greame Road, Bridlington.

IS the end for PM David Cameron nigh, as leader of the Tories, because of his inability to comprehend international feelings with our European partners?

The UK is a minority partner, Cameron is a little man in the puzzle, a PM who has no experience of being a working man, and lacks diplomatic qualifications. To begin, he does not comprehend the views of the UK people, before intruding in European affairs. The Ides of next March will see the dagger stuck in his spineless future!

From: David “Dai” Woosnam, Scartho, Grimsby.

I AM a true Europhile who loves the diversity of Europe and her peoples, but despises that Gang of Thieves, otherwise known as the EU. And I will not be sitting on my hands when it comes to the referendum. I want to vote Yes... but to coming out.

Why is it that EU lovers are being allowed to choose to be the Yes brigade here?

From: Terry Palmer, Hoyland, Barnsley.

HAVE you ever wondered why the BBC always seem to be biased in their pro-EU view? The answer lies in the fact that the BBC has received £22m from this club over the past seven years – for doing what you may ask? Good question. Maybe David Dimbleby or even The Yorkshire Post’s readers can give us an answer?