Letter: UK role in Europe
Wednesday 28 July 1999
There is an anti-European minority which seeks to rule out British membership of the single currency, even if it were in our national interest to join, and perhaps take Britain out of the European Union altogether. That view is rejected by the vast majority of British people.
Britain has gained greatly from our membership of the European Union. It accounts for almost 60 per cent of our visible exports, and three and a half million British jobs are linked to trade with Europe. The anti- Europeans would put those benefits in jeopardy. That is why it is so important to restate the importance of Britain playing a leading role in Europe.
Involving senior politicians from all parties, as well as people from business, the voluntary sector, and trade unions, Britain in Europe represents the mainstream, commonsense view of the British people that Britain's place is in Europe, and that we should maintain a credible option to join the single currency if the economic conditions are met. The Britain in Europe campaign will redress the balance of this debate and ensure that the British people are fully informed about this crucial issue.
That is why we - representatives of the three British political parties - along with many of our colleagues, fully support the Prime Minister's leadership of the Britain in Europe campaign. Our country's future depends upon the outcome of this debate.
Lord BASSAM OF BRIGHTON
ALAN BEITH MP
(Berwick-upon-Tweed, Lib Dem)
MALCOLM BRUCE MP
(Gordon, Lib Dem)
Dr VINCENT CABLE MP
(Twickenham, Lib Dem)
MENZIES CAMPBELL MP
(North East Fife, Lib Dem)
EDWARD DAVEY MP
(Kingston and Surbiton, Lib Dem)
ALAN DONNELLY MEP (Lab)
BARBARA FOLLETT MP
PAULINE GREEN MEP (Lab)
Baroness GOULD OF POTTERNEWTON
Sir EDWARD HEATH MP
(Old Bexley and Sidcup, C)
Lord HOLME OF CHELTENHAM
Lord HOWE OF ABERAVON
LEMBIT OPIK MP
(Montgomeryshire, Lib Dem)
GILES RADICE MP
(Durham North, Lab)
ANDREW ROWE MP
(Faversham and Kent Mid, C)
BILL RAMMELL MP
Lord THOMSON OF MONIFIETH
STEPHEN TWIGG MP
(Enfield Southgate, Lab)
Sir RAY WHITNEY MP
GRAHAM WATSON MEP (Lib Dem)
Britain in Europe
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