Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs and Trade Brendan Smith TD is urging British citizens living in Ireland to register to vote in the upcoming referendum on Britain’s membership of the European Union by the 16th May deadline. The vote will take place on June 23rd.
Deputy Smith explained, “I cannot stress enough the importance of this referendum and the need for all those who are eligible to vote to register before the deadline so they can have their say on this crucial issue.
“While Britain’s membership of the European Union is a matter for Britain alone to decide, Fianna Fáil is very clear in our view that a British exit from the EU would not be in the best interests of the Union and certainly not in the best interests of the island of Ireland.
“Several reports have outlined the implications that a British exit from the EU would have on Ireland, especially in the areas of trade, travel, tourism and the agri-food sector. A Brexit may also affect funding from the EU which has been instrumental in supporting peace initiatives and fostering good relations. Any return to border controls would impact cross-border workers, along with travel and tourism North and South of the border.
“A recently published report from the OECD on the economic consequences of Brexit has stated a Brexit would ‘’have persistent adverse consequences on economic activity in the UK, and would result in negative near-term spillovers elsewhere, particularly in the rest of the EU’’. No doubt as Britain is our nearest neighbour and largest trading partner the ‘negative spillovers’ would be felt more in Ireland than any other EU state.
“Opinion polls suggest that the outcome of the referendum is particularly uncertain. It is therefore imperative that everyone eligible to vote has their say as every vote matters. While the European Union is not perfect and is in need of reform, it has served us well. It is my hope that Britain recognises the many benefits that the European Union has brought us and that they vote to remain on June 23rd”.