“If David Cameron concentrates on changes that will create growth and jobs in Britain and across the EU, he will find himself with powerful allies”- Lucy Thomas, Campaign Director of Business for New Europe
The first signs from European leaders are that David Cameron’s reforms will not be agreed straight away but they are willing to listen. Business leaders from the pro-European campaign Business for New Europe said that the informal talks seemed encouraging but that the momentum must be kept up behind changes that worked for the whole of Europe and not a narrow UK-only agenda.
They were also clear that the substance of the reforms were more important than whether or not there is treaty change.
Mr Cameron said that while he was “confident” of success, changes would not be met by a “wall of love” and would take time. He said he would push for changes that would be “in everyone’s interests.” The Prime Minister was not wholly specific on the details, but reiterated his desire for reforms on migrant access to benefits, political integration and the integrity of the Single Market.
Lucy Thomas, Campaign Director of Business for New Europe, said:
“It was encouraging to see David Cameron looking to deliver reforms that are “in everyone’s interest.” Now he needs to turn rhetoric into reality. To make Europe work better for business and people across Europe, the Prime Minister needs to engage with our allies to cut red tape, open markets Europe-wide and complete free trade deals with the USA, Japan and others. But just as important as this is what he needs not to do. Other EU leaders have been clear that treaty change could not take place before the end of 2017, so it is more important to focus on the substance of reform rather than the technical process of how that is achieved.
“Both national leaders and senior Brussels leaders are behind a reform process, focused on unlocking investment, cutting red tape and completing the Single Market. If David Cameron concentrates on changes that will create growth and jobs in Britain and across the EU, he will find himself with powerful allies in Europe.”