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People should vote in June 23 referendum on the basis of facts, not the fiction of Leave campaign

It is unfortunate that the local Press reported - without challenge - the Leave campaign's assertion that Northern Ireland is a "net contributor" to EU funds of £67m each year.

Then on the same day the Leave campaign had been forced to admit to the BBC that it had omitted Northern Ireland's share of the rebate from that total, meaning Northern Ireland is, in fact, even on the Leave campaign's own figures, a net recipient each year from the EU of £58m. This means, put plainly, that leaving the EU would cost Northern Ireland at least £58m each year - a cost borne primarily by farmers, but also by small businesses.

Add to this the loss of funding for educational and business research, infrastructure (such as the York Street interchange) and underwriting of other projects (such as Ulster University's new campus) and the penalty for leaving the EU becomes even more severe.

Throw in the rising cost of living (everything from groceries to mortgages) and the facts are quite simply that leaving the EU would come at a cost to households, businesses and public finances across Northern Ireland.

People are entitled to vote whichever way they wish on June 23, but they must do so on the basis of facts - not fiction.


Chair, European Movement NI

Belfast Telegraph

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