TheCityUK responds to Angela Merkel's speech

TheCityUK strongly supports Chancellor Merkel’s comment today that the UK should remain at the heart of the EU. Speaking in the Palace of Westminster, she said “We need a strong UK with a strong voice inside the EU.”

TheCityUK believes that the UK should actively participate in discussions on the future structures of the Eurozone and make sure that the UK’s interests are best represented. The supportive comments of Chancellor Merkel in this respect are encouraging.

A strong Eurozone is essential to the UK economy. We support reforms to improve its stability, including the creation of the Banking Union and structural reforms to boost jobs and growth. Closer integration in the Eurozone will have important long term consequences for the wider EU. In this context it is vital to preserve the integrity of the Single Market and ensure those countries remaining outside the Euro area not disadvantaged.

Germany’s support for the UK’s position in the EU is important to the UK and David Cameron is right to place such importance on the Chancellor’s visit. There are many examples where positive changes to the EU have been achieved as a result of UK and German co-operation. The first ever real term cut in the EU seven year budget, secured at a time when Member States were making their own domestic spending cuts, is a notable example.

Looking ahead, there are a number of areas where the UK and Germany already agree on how the EU can work better including a greater role for national parliaments, more respect for subsidiarity, promoting the Single Market and securing the EU’s international competitiveness.

Chris Cummings, Chief Executive of TheCityUK said: “Germany will be a vital ally to the UK in ensuring that the EU institutions work for all Member States, promoting jobs and growth for European citizens.   

“Continued membership of the EU is critical to UK business, jobs and growth as demonstrated by a recent survey of our membership, “The City Speaks”, which found that 95% of respondents believe that access to the Single Market is important to the UK’s future competitiveness and 88% agreed that the EU membership is economically beneficial to the UK.”