Britain Threatens to Leave the Union

Written by | Thursday, January 16th, 2014

London announced that the United Kingdom was ready to leave the European Union unless the block agrees to reform. The statement was pronounced by the UK’s chancellor George Osborne when speaking at a two-day conference on EU reform which was organized by the think tank Open Europe. Mr Osborne added that the EU will reform or be doomed to decline. He said that the EU28 is still lingering in the status quo which “condemns the people of Europe to an ongoing economic crisis and continuing to decline.”
The chancellor pointed out that Europe’s labour market is not only rigid and inflexible but also getting increasingly uncompetitive and falling behind the markets of emerging countries or other economic blocks. Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron proposed a plan for the UK to remain an EU member, and the reforms are followed by public balloting. Mr Cameron’s Conservative Party is piloting a bill to guarantee a referendum on EU membership in 2017 if they win elections in 2015.
The Conservative party dominates Britain’s coalition government, and tries to make Brussels focus on completing the single market and prioritise free trade deals with the US, Japan and China. Chancellor Osborne urged that the EU should not allow the will of the eighteen eurozone countries to undermine the voice of non-euro countries. He also stated that if the EU is not able to protect collective interests of non-euro economies, then Britain “will have to choose between joining the eurozone, which the UK will not do, or leave the European Union.” Mr Osborne added that he believed it was in nobody’s interest to make that choice. His colleague, Andrea Leadsom, summed it up saying that given current circumstances, the referendum on the EU membership is already “inevitable”.

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