Putting the row over the £9m booklet aside, we examine the assertions it makes in No 10’s case for the UK’s continued membership
The claim 44% of what Britain sells abroad goes to EU countries, the leaflet claims, and 3m jobs are linked to these exports. It says the “single market makes it easier and cheaper for UK companies to sell their products outside the UK” as well as making the country a more attractive place to invest.
The claim EU membership has improved life for the average Briton though aviation reforms that secured a significant drop in the cost of airfares and through the abolition of mobile phone roaming charges across member states, the leaflet says. It warns that benefits such as these may not continue in the event of Britain leaving the EU. It adds that a vote for Brexit will put pressure on the value of the pound, risking higher prices for consumers in the UK.
What happens if we leave the EU?
The claim Voting to leave the EU would bring “years of uncertainty and potential economic disruption”, affecting investment and jobs. The government’s view, the leaflet says, is that it could take a decade to unpick Britain’s ties with the EU and renegotiate the associated treaties. It adds that no other country has significant access to the single market without having to follow EU rules, pay into the bloc and accept its citizens living in their country.
Immigration and crime
The claim The new EU deal will make the UK’s benefit system less attractive for migrants, and leaving the EU does not close the door to immigration from the bloc. The leaflet adds that continued membership brings access to law enforcement intelligence from 27 EU countries.
The idea of EU membership making Britain more or less safe from crime or terrorism is a contentious one. Some supporters of Britain leaving used last month’s bombing in Brussels to argue that the attack showed the UK was better off out of a bloc with open borders. Others vehemently disagreed, noting that border controls into the UK would remain much as they are whether or not the country remains in the EU.