Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education



Front Page

World

UK

UK Politics

Business

Sci/Tech

Health

Education

Sport

Entertainment

Talking Point
On Air
Feedback
Low Graphics
Help

Monday, November 23, 1998 Published at 00:17 GMT


Business: The Economy

CBI says Europe 'huge opportunity'

Sir Clive Thompson: Europe has boosted the UK's trade

The UK must not lose sight of the benefits of European Union membership during the debate on joining the single currency, according to the president of the CBI.

European single currency
Sir Clive Thompson, sharing a platform with Tory Euro-sceptic Bill Cash at a meeting of the Danish Chamber of Commerce is expected say that even those who agree with Mr Cash should recognise the advantages of the single market.

He will be speaking in London just hours after a letter is published in the Financial Times, signed by Sir Clive and 99 other business leaders, urging the Government to join the euro as soon as economic conditions are right.


[ image: The majority of British firms now favour joining the euro]
The majority of British firms now favour joining the euro
Sir Clive will say: "So much heat and not much light is generated by debates on Europe and EMU in this country.

"We must remind ourselves that Europe is much more than EMU - a huge opportunity, but still a potential threat.

"What has the UK gained, or lost, because of its membership of the EU?

"Taking just one aspect of EU membership, the single market, the European Commission reckon that EU gross domestic product was around 1.1% higher than it would have been without the single market and there are up to one million more jobs.

"I suspect these estimates don't even begin to quantify the gains that we have made from increased competition and even greater exposure to our competitors and their ways of doing things."

He added: "Contrary to the fears of many back in the 1970s, our increasing trade with Europe has not forced us into a fortress Europe.

"The UK's trade volumes have grown by 138% since 1974 - three times the rate of economic growth. We have achieved that as part of the EU." Sir Clive will quote a recent MORI poll which showed three-quarters of British firms supported joining the euro.

He will acknowledge that sceptics are right to warn of the problems that a single interest rate across Europe could cause.

But surveys, he claims, suggest the majority of business people believe the risks are outweighed by the benefits.





Advanced options | Search tips




Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©


The Economy Contents


Relevant Stories

23 Nov 98 | The Economy
Bosses back euro

11 Nov 98 | The Economy
EU work proposals 'step too far'

03 Nov 98 | The Economy
CBI calls for euro date

02 Nov 98 | The Economy
Don't panic Gordon, says CBI

02 Nov 98 | The Economy
Paving UK's euro way

20 Oct 98 | The Economy
CBI warns of global slowdown

01 Oct 98 | The Economy
This man means business





Internet Links


Confederation of British Industry


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.




In this section

Inquiry into energy provider loyalty

Brown considers IMF job

Chinese imports boost US trade gap

No longer Liffe as we know it

The growing threat of internet fraud

House passes US budget

Online share dealing triples

Rate fears as sales soar

Brown's bulging war-chest

Oil reaches nine-year high

UK unemployment falls again

Trade talks deadlocked

US inflation still subdued

Insolvent firms to get breathing space

Bank considered bigger rate rise

UK pay rising 'too fast'

Utilities face tough regulation

CBI's new chief named

US stocks hit highs after rate rise

US Fed raises rates

UK inflation creeps up

Row over the national shopping basket

Military airspace to be cut

TUC warns against following US

World growth accelerates

Union merger put in doubt

Japan's tentative economic recovery

EU fraud costs millions

CBI choice 'could wreck industrial relations'

WTO hails China deal

US business eyes Chinese market

Red tape task force

Websites and widgets

Guru predicts web surge

Malaysia's economy: The Sinatra Principle

Shell secures Iranian oil deal

Irish boom draws the Welsh

China deal to boost economy

US dream scenario continues

Japan's billion dollar spending spree