THE PRESS OFFICE OF
The Lord Stoddart of Swindon (Independent Labour)
19th November 2015
In response to a written question from the independent Labour peer, Lord Stoddart of Swindon, the Government has revealed the 2014 figures for UK trade with the EU and which expose a £78.9 billion deficit with the EU.
Responding for the Government , Lord Maude of Horsham, from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills said: ‘The UK’s trade in goods deficit with the EU was £78.9bn in 2014. The overall trade in goods and services deficit with the EU was £61.7bn.’
Lord Stoddart, commenting on the Government’s response, said: “We are constantly told that EU membership is vital for our trading interests. The Government’s answer exposes it as a deceit. The EU countries sell far more to us than we do to them, so we can see who really benefits from EU membership. Even more seriously, the deficit has to be financed and it is quite clear that much of it comes foreign companies buying up British businesses. This is not a bottomless form of funding and cannot be relied on indefinitely. Our trade deficit with the EU has been going on for decades and is something the public needs to understand, when considering how to vote in the forthcoming referendum on EU membership. We need a simple free trade agreement with the EU, not the whole panoply of membership and the huge financial and regulatory costs that come with it.”
The full text of Lord Stoddart’s question and the Government’s reply is as follows:
From: Written Parliamentary Questions and Answers
Sent: 17 November 2015 17:53
To: STODDART, D Lord
Subject: Written answer to your QWA HL3451 received from Lord Maude of Horsham, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills
Lord Maude of Horsham, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, has provided the following answer to your written parliamentary question (HL3451):
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what was the deficit in trade with the EU in 2014 in (1) goods, and (2) overall in goods and services; and how that deficit is financed. (HL3451)
Tabled on: 09 November 2015
Lord Maude of Horsham:
The UK’s trade in goods deficit with the EU was £78.9bn in 2014. The overall trade in goods and services deficit with the EU was £61.7bn.
The UK’s total trade deficit is financed by a net inflow of investment in the financial account, for which data is not available on a geographical basis. The UK’s financial account surplus was £89.4bn in 2014.
Source: ONS Pink Book 2015