The EU puts up barriers to trade and restrictions on imports. The EU has spent nearly a decade trying and failing to negotiate a trade deal with India…writes Priti Patel MP, Employment Minister and Prime Minister David Cameron’s Indian Diaspora Champion. Priti is the most prominent British-Asian politician in the Vote Leave
British Indians and Asians should feel confident about voting to leave the EU in the forthcoming referendum. Our history and heritage means that we have a strong understanding of Britain’s place in the world and our global links.
We can see a world beyond the EU and know of the opportunities that exist to boost trade and enhance family and cultural connections. We dismiss the pessimistic worldview that the political establishment promotes because we know that the EU stands as a barrier to our interests.
While the UK remains a member of the EU, we are unable to work closely with India and other countries who are playing an increasingly important role in the world. The EU puts up barriers to trade and restrictions on imports. The EU has spent nearly a decade trying and failing to negotiate a trade deal with India. We want to work with these countries to share expertise and exchange goods and services, but the EU’s protectionist attitude and vested interests are blocking progress.
After we Vote Leave, the UK would be free to negotiate its own far-reaching trade deals with India and dozens of other growing economies. Our own connections and ties to those countries would mean we could use the expertise of the diaspora to negotiate a far better mutually beneficial deal than anything that the EU’s out-of-touch bureaucrats in Brussels could achieve.
Our parents and grandparents established communities in this country built around their families, places of worship and their businesses. They worked hard to give us a good future and play a positive role in British life. But while we remain a member of the EU, the businesses that we have worked hard to establish are at risk from costly red tape and regulations from Brussels. Red tape from the EU costs businesses billions of pounds each year, money which could instead be invested in growing businesses and creating jobs. By leaving the EU, we can replace EU red tape with sensible rules that promote the entrepreneurial spirit that we have in abundance. We send £350 million a week to Brussels, this is money that could be spent on our priorities like the NHS.
After we Vote Leave, the UK would also be able to reform our immigration rules and introduce a new system that is fair and balanced. At the moment, our open borders give over 500 million EU nationals unrestricted access to this country. The pressures being put on our services by immigration from the EU has meant that tough limits have been put in place on immigration from outside the EU. This means that our relatives struggle to get visas to come to the UK for family celebrations, restaurants can not employ skilled chefs from abroad, our temples cannot bring in priests, and we cannot bring people in for business, cultural or sporting events – as well as the thousands of talented professionals like doctors, teachers and engineers. Once we take back control of our borders and Vote Leave, we can have an immigration system that is fair to all and allows us to bring in the brightest and the best from across the world.
Voting to leave the EU on 23 June is the safe and secure choice for our country, and it is the choice that is in the best interests of our Indian and Asian diaspora communities. It is now time to take back control of our laws, our borders and our democracy and rejoin the rest of the world.
( Priti Patel MP is Prime Minister David Cameron’s Indian Diaspora Champion)