Britain benefits from free movement

Voters often cofree-movementnfuse internal and external EU migration, mistakenly assuming that a Brexit would better prevent non-EU nationals from ‘sneaking in’. Hugo Dixon, Chairman and Editor-in-chief of InFacts.org, thinks it won’t. This piece is part of the UCL European Institute’s second guest editor week on openDemocracy.

The Treaty of Rome, which set up the forerunner to the EU, enshrined what are known as the ‘four freedoms’: free movement of goods, services, capital and people. This is one of the most important charters for freedom the world has ever seen. In Britain, there is little controversy over the first three freedoms. But free movement of people is the subject of heated debate. If Britain ultimately votes to quit the EU, a desire to curb immigration will probably be the main reason.

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Five minutes with Emmanuel Mourlon-Druol: “The UK already opts out of anything it dislikes; it could very well end up leaving the EU on an entirely flawed debate”

numbers-time-watch-whiteIn an interview with UCL’s Claudia Sternberg, Emmanuel Mourlon-Druol, Lord Kelvin Adam Smith Fellow at the University of Glasgow’s Adam Smith Business School, discusses today’s EU referendum from the perspective of the last 50 years of the UK’s presence in EU.

In what ways is today’s EU referendum different from the June 1975 precedent?

The difference is that in 1974 the actual renegotiations started fairly quickly after British Prime Minister Harold Wilson’s re-election: he had tabled early on what he wanted to renegotiate. Today, we just know the fairly vague wish-list that David Cameron drew up. How this can materialise into a genuine ‘renegotiation’ process with all other EU member states is still a mystery today. Continue reading