1:41pm Friday 6th September 2013 in Letters
I MUST respond to the letter from Derek Vaughan in which he tries to justify the importance of British membership of the EU, and its value to Wales. As an MEP, he will have this view.
He says Wales may receive up to £ 2.1 billion in EU funding programmes. And of course, that is wonderful.
But has he forgotten that Britain pays in a nett amount in excess of £ 11 billion per year?
Or that many years ago we were members of a sixnation free trade area, EFTA, which has no centralised bureaucracy?
And then, of course, under Mr Heath, we joined a free trade area, the Common Market, but only as the result of a national referendum.
That was a grouping of seven nations who traded free of any tariffs. That is what we voted for, and nothing more was intended.
He may too have forgotten that there are only nine nations paying into the EU, of which Germany and Britain are far the largest contributors, and those nine nations are funding the 19 nations who are all nett receivers.
Maybe he too disregards the cost to us of the huge bail-outs of Greece, Portugal and the many countries yet to follow.
And he does not mention the 44,000 staff in Brussels and Strasburg.
The exports from other EU countries into the UK are more than double ours to them, so it is vital for them to keep the tariff-free conditions between us, a very strong basis for our negotiation of future terms.
The reason why a great many Japanese and other Far East and Asian companies invest in Britain is that they achieve the best results from the British workforce, and of course can use the world language of English.
I have spent most of my working life travelling Asia and the Far East, and everywhere I have been the first foreign language learnt is English, with very few speaking German, French, Spanish or others.
Nissan, Honda and Toyota are here to build cars for both UK and export, and Nissan, Sunderland, is the most productive and qualityefficient factory in the world.
Would they be doing that now if they feared a withdrawal from the EU would affect them?
Mr Vaughan suggests that we need the complex EU employment laws to protect our working population.
Surely our own government can ensure that employment laws are fair to all parties?
Many years ago Mr Goldsmith formed the Referendum Party, with only one objective: “Let the people decide” on EU membership.
Now, maybe 20 years later, we are still waiting for that referendum. May it come soon, and may the British people make their judgement based on facts PETER BELLAN, St Davids