Scaring the Investors

You may remember George Osborne and assorted Unionists warning that uncertainty drives away investors…looks like they were right. Another Cabinet minister, this time Vince Cable, is saying just that. Only it isn’t Scotland they’re worried about, it’s Britain.

Foreign investors are shunning the UK because of the looming danger of a No vote, not in our referendum but Cameron’s European referendum. They told us we were worrying the money men, now it turns out they’re doing it themselves, with the major difference that this time there are names to be added in…no more anonymous “business leaders are telling me” code for nobody in particular.

Companies including Ford and rival Nissan – which both have manufacturing operations in Britain – have publicly warned they would reconsider their future in the UK should it choose to leave the EU.

Even the CBI, firm Unionist adherents, say an exit from the EU would put Britain’s global future at risk. The director general, John Cridland, said continued EU membership was crucial for Britain’s global economic future. “A large majority of CBI businesses of all sizes are clear: the UK is best served inside a reformed EU, rather than outside with no influence. The single market is a great British success story and has been an engine for jobs and growth in every corner of the country and across the continent.”

Even the American and Japanese Embassies have let journalists know they have concerns, both representing major inward investment countries.

The Guardian quoted Neil Rami, chief executive of the inward investment agency Marketing Birmingham, saying foreign investors were telling him they were worried about the uncertainty.

“It is making them nervous and reticent. One of the reasons why businesses like Jaguar, Land Rover and Deutsche Bank have chosen to invest and grow in Birmingham is because it offers them quick and direct access to important European markets. By pledging a referendum and putting EU membership in the balance, we lose a major string to our bow and potential investors will look elsewhere.”

Where are all those reporters who brought us with relish news that nobody would invest in Scotland because of the referendum and companies would leave and why does a story aimed at damaging the independence side make a headline when harder evidence that the Union and it’s referendum, doesn’t?

This is what Vince Cable said when asked if investors were asking about the EU referendum: “The answer is yes. What I say as a government minister is that the risks of us leaving the EU are very, very low … and I just try to reassure foreign investors.”

This is now a point of pressure on Better Together – one leader of their own side, a member of Cabinet, makes clear that the Union under the Coalition is likely to lose foreign investment because of its approach to the EU making a Yes vote the best guarantee of staying in. And we’ve still to hear from Labour on what they will do about a referendum. There is in this another example of unraveling as words they thought would aid their case rebound and by implication cast doubt on everything else they are saying.

We are part of the world’s largest single market – an economic zone larger than that of the USA and Japan combined with a total GDP of around £11 trillion.  It has 500 million people and enables free trade with 3.5 million jobs in Britain linked, directly or indirectly, to other Member States. No wonder they’re keen to scare us we might be thrown out but perhaps they should assess their own strategy first. A little fear on the No side might be healthy for them. (I wonder how many of those Better Together donors are also anti-EU?)

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0 thoughts on “Scaring the Investors

  1. Always like consistency in a campaign.

  2. “Where are all those reporters who brought us with relish news that nobody would invest in Scotland because of the referendum and companies would leave and why does a story aimed at damaging the independence side make a headline when harder evidence that the Union and it’s referendum, doesn’t?”

    Almost feels like we have a biased media, eh?

  3. What do you know?

    There is such a thing as Karma. 🙂

  4. Then there is Alistair Carmichael who is in Brussels to give a speech on Europe. This lame duck Secretary of State is more likely to give foreign investors the titters than the jitters.

  5. I think you’ll find Ian Taylor (Vitol), who gave Better Together 500k has also made large donations to UKIP.

    Better Together! ( as long as it’s not with Johny foreigner)

  6. Surely, no matter how its spun by the NO camp, the £500k donation to Better Together from Ian Taylor through his company Vitol is illegal. It fails to qualify with any of the strictures imposed by the Electoral Commission, so why is it being allowed to Darling and his NO campaign? Darling has publicly refused to return it as non-acceptable within the terms he is forced to comply with – so where is the adjudication, just where is the EC’s disapprobation?

  7. Murray McCallum

    “What I [Vince Cable] say as a government minister is that the risks of us leaving the EU are very, very low … and I just try to reassure foreign investors.”

    Sounds as if Vince is now misleading non-UK citizens. He has gone ‘global’. I don’t see how he can justify the “very, very [low]” description given the rise of UKIP and all the Westminster Parties stumbling over each other to pander to his sentiments.

    New One Nation Labour will wait and see what their focus groups tell them their policy on an EU referendum will be. It may include changing the font on the Tory policy and talk about being at the heart of the European family – just as long as they never visit us.

  8. I am going to do an Ian Smart forecast here that Cameron’s In/Out referendum on Europe will never see the light of day.The HOL is a great place to bury things you don’t actually want to see coming to life.Labour will wait to see if this ruse works before declaring their position.

  9. Derek as you are clearly someone who professes to believe in democracy, perhaps you can explain why you are so against people being given a democratic say on whether the UK continues on in the EU? This is after all something that the majority of the people who voted for the coalition wanted and of course the previous labour government promised a referendum to their supporters and then broke that promise. Yet conversely at the same time you support a movement that has managed to secure a referendum on Scotland remaining in the UK when only around 23% of the electorate voted for them (and not even all of that 23% support independence) and wants to railroad scots into accepting EU membership on terms said movement deems acceptable? I’m sure I’m not the only one who can see the contradiction in your views here.

    You see the thing is, the UK will not vote to leave the EU. States like Germany who have realised that the EU integration project is causing them internal problems will support his moves to lessen the control of the UK by the EU and the EU will acquiesce as it won’t want to lose it potentially most populous and wealthiest member.

    I also completely fail to see how you think a yes vote is the surest way to stay in the EU, we all now know what will happen and we all know that if Scotland EU accession negotiations don’t conclude within salmonds “fanciful” timetable (based on nothing more than an unguarded remark in a radio interview that has now been corrected) there is a very real chance that iScotland will be out of the EU for some period of time. Let’s not even get onto the terms of possible iScotland accession as we all know the deal will not be as good as we have now. He whole idea of salmond picking and choosing what iScotland will sign up to attain EU membership in time for his “Independence Day” is anything but democratic.

    Perhaps you can explain to me then why it is that you support a minority movement trying to force its will on the majority and deny people a say on the EU, when many of them voted for this, and yet at the same time criticise a government that is intending to offer not only their supporters what they want but the supporters of the government that preceded them? It seems to me that in the nationalist view of democracy is a strange one.

    • John, I’m not against anybody getting a vote on anything. But if London promises a referendum knowing that over half the population will say No,and to appease UKIP, I may be wrong, but it does imply there might be a No vote which is not my wish. Logical, no? I have cut out your quote that “the UK will not vote to leave the EU”…and I’ll send it to Cameron so he’ll change his mind knowing your ability as a seer. My impression was that the SNP actually won the Scottish election under the rules applying to all parties…you seem to think otherwise. It is not a minority government if it wins most seats, I think you’ll find. It’s a democratic principle even used in the Mother of Parliaments. If some Scots fail to vote, hell mend them. How many votes did your party get? If you like, I’m prepared to pit myself against your extraordinary foresight capability and bet you a Euro Scotland will never be thrown out of the EU. Such low respect for your own. I detect an aversion to garlic, John. Are you anti European and does that motivate you more than independence? If so, remember you can vote Yes in September and vote for the EU-Out Party afterwards, except Scotland does’t have one. that detail is annoying, isn’t it, that more people vote for a Socialist Republic than UKIP. (By the way Wings, Newsnet and myself are not mainstream media wired to the state, given government briefings, interviews with ministers, registered as newspapers with shareholders, getting taxpayers advertising and with an expectation of providing broadly balanced journalism. We exist partly because of the failure of the Media. We don’t pretend, as they do, to weigh the scales of balance although interestingly without Newsnet there would be no BBC/STV bias story. Would you prefer that no one knew about the BBC Bias Report? Is that your kind of society where bias from trusted sources is hidden from the voters?) I’ve missed the Separation Committee’s latest efforts, John, but I suggest if you want balance you check out professor Tomkin’s personal website where he comes over all mawkish about how he loves Britain and it’s his whole identity etc. He is one of the most outspoken Britnats in Scotland (as he’s entitled to be )but if that’s your measure of balance, you can have my Royal Baby calendar for free.
      regards Derek

      • couple of wee pointers.

        I don’t have a “party”, i actually voted for the SNP the last 2 elections, never again.

        I am not anti EU, i am anti an undemocratic EU.

  10. This is John MacIntyre OBE fouler of the Herald!

  11. I think Mad John says it all for me.

    No doubt a proud Scot.

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