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by Nigel Griffiths
07 March 2016
Why Scotland should vote to leave the EU

Why Scotland should vote to leave the EU

David Cameron has one thing in his favour – he had a list for Brussels; the other major parties demanded nothing. They are failing to reconnect with millions of voters who want to keep the £19bn we give the EU every year and spend it here in Britain on our priorities, like Scottish steel and manufacturing. 

Brussels’ failure to tackle dumping has driven our steel industry to the wall. Yet Brussels spends 40 per cent of its budget on agriculture, producing 5.5 per cent of jobs and only 1.6 per cent of EU output. Fifty-four years of promised ‘reform’ has achieved colossal waste. The UK contributes £5bn to the CAP. Our farmers get £2.9bn back. LEAVING would give us £5bn to spend on sustainable food production and the management of our countryside.

Outside the EU, we need to stop the damage caused by dumping EU-subsidised agricultural products in Africa. The EU’s own report on its overseas aid shows £11.2bn was wasted in graft and incompetence.


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The fishing crisis is worse. EU mismanagement over 44 years has resulted in 60 per cent of fish products being imported from non-EU countries – and our beaches polluted with dead fish when half the North Sea catch was thrown back dead. While Scotland’s fishing fleets have been devastated, Iceland’s thrived and Norway’s production increased by over 40 per cent in the last decade.

As well as swallowing £350m every week from the UK, Brussels has allowed Luxembourg to become the tax haven of choice for multinational companies who do the bulk of their business in the UK. EU rules and judges have robbed us of billions of pounds in taxes. Leaving the EU allows us to tax company profits here.

The myth that the EU has stopped wars in Europe is an insult to 100,000 people butchered, 50,000 women raped and 2.2 million displaced in Bosnia or the 1.1 million Kosovars who later fled.

The EU sends us far more than we send it – five million jobs in the EU depend on us buying from it. That’s two million more than are created here making exports to EU countries. They can’t afford a trade war with us.

None of this was on the Prime Minister’s list.

Dr Nigel Griffiths is Scottish Coordinator of Labour Leave and Former UK Minister for Trade and Industry

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