Commenting on the speech by the Prime Minister in Davos, Terry Scuoler, Chief Executive of EEF, the manufacturers’ organisation, said:
“As the campaign about EU membership starts to build, the Prime Minister’s focus on the prize of getting the EU reform package in place, the need for patience to achieve this and, the ambition for the UK to continue to exert influence on policies that affect competitiveness is welcomed by businesses. An agenda that works for the UK and the competitiveness of all member states is where I believe we must get to.
“Whatever the outcome of the renegotiation, however, businesses must speak up whether or not they want to remain in the EU, because it must be an open and democratic debate.
“I think the stakes for Britain couldn’t be higher because the outcome will set a course for our market access, regulatory frameworks and supply chains in the decades to come. The lesson of the Scottish vote was clear. The failure of business to enter the fray until the last minute almost proved costly. We cannot afford to risk that happening again on an issue that is so fundamentally important to the future prosperity of the UK.