"Playing with the jobs of millions of people is not a game. If we leave the European single market to which we export tens of thousands of cars, huge quantities of chemicals and pharmaceuticals, the wings of Airbus planes and a myriad of financial services, without the foggiest idea what comes in its place, the problems caused will become worse every day and they won’t wear off with a stiff drink.
When they have discussed it in the past, some Leave campaigners have suggested that we could somehow stay in the single market but not have freedom of movement of people. This is beyond ridiculous: the rest of the EU is never going to give us a better arrangement than they have themselves. Others have said we could be like Norway and be in the European Economic Area, but Norwegians have to pay into the EU and accept higher immigration than we do while having no say over any of the rules.
Yet others have said we would be like Albania, but that country has an agreement based on ultimately joining the EU and the euro. Or like Canada, it has been said, before realising that the deal between the EU and Canada has already taken seven years to negotiate, still isn’t ratified and wouldn’t cover most of our economy. Well, then, we would just rely on the World Trade Organisation rules, like America and China, was, I think, the last option put forward by Leave campaigners.
Anyone with a job really needs to know what that means. It means a tariff of 10 per cent can be added to every car we make, or 20 per cent on our huge exports of whisky, or 36 per cent on a dairy product. British businesses would face all those extra costs, and yet if they still wanted to export to the rest of Europe they would have to comply with all the EU rules on their products, getting the worst of all worlds – the regulation on top of extra taxes, as well as customs to clear. "
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