LETTER: Interesting times ahead

Michael Rider in his letter relating to the EU vote, headed ‘Let’s get back to basics in this debate’, concludes ‘– a vote for realism, good sense and cooperation will give us far more chances to exert our influence where it counts, and reshape for ourselves a more helpful destiny.

Very nice words but:

1) Overseas Trade Statistics published by HM Revenue and Customs for February 2016 informs us that: ‘In EU trade the UK was a net importer this month, with imports exceeding exports by £8.2 billion.’ So we must be bankrolling the EU to the tune of £8.2 billion in one month to fund this trade gap.

As the UK has an astonishingly large national debt we must be borrowing the money to fund EU business. If you spend more than you earn then you borrow the difference or go bankrupt. We do not have a trade surplus with the European Union (EU).

2) When our prime minister went to the EU for concessions recently to help make sure the UK population could be persuaded to stay in the EU, he got hardly any concessions. As most ideas are put to the vote in the EU, it is difficult or impossible for the UK to change the EU to further UK national interests. We have little influence in the EU because we do not have enough votes to force changes.

Economic prosperity is always possible if a country borrows a lot of money to fund it, unfortunately there is always a time when the money has to be paid back to the lenders, as the Greeks found out.

In the real world if you have money, there is generally a choice in how you spend the money. Your neighbour does not say how your wages are to be spent. The EU has a large fund of money from the UK which it decides how to spend. Unfortunately since someone invented the EU there has never been a year when it has had the accounts signed as correct by the auditors. Something is wrong with the EU’s financial workings.

Interesting times ahead.

J Holmes

Coombe Rise