The Sun, October 1998
We could … get out from under the deluge of idiotic Euro directives by withdrawing from political union. We could then join the renamed North American Free Trade Association.
The single market operates on the basis of enforceable rules – regulations and directives which have established the free movement of goods, services, capital and persons in the EU. Getting out from under the directives means getting out of the single market. This is not in the UK’s economic interest – as the Sun itself points out.
The EU has already negotiated substantial trade liberalisation with its largest trading partner – the United States. Joining the current Northern American Free Trade Agreement would actually represent a step backwards for UK companies trading with the United States for example in the recognition of product safety standards.
HM Treasury estimates that 50 per cent of UK overall foreign trade is with the European Union. Almost 60 per cent of UK foreign trade in goods is with the other 14 Member States. This myth is potentially damaging for Britain’s trade with both of its most important trading partners.