SMMT reconfirms support for 'Remain' ahead of EU referendum vote
20 June 2016
Author: Daniel Puddicombe
The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders has restated its view that remaining in the European Union is best for the UK automotive industry ahead of Thursday's referendum.
According to the SMMT, the motoring industry supports 800,000 jobs across the country and contributes £15.5bn to the economy each year with exports and vehicle production at record highs.
The SMMT said that unrestricted access to the world's largest single market, the negotiating strength of the EU to secure international trade deals, the ability to shape technical regulations and free movement of labour all provide significant benefits to UK businesses and that is why the body's members are in favour of remaining in the EU.
Ahead of the campaigning period, the organisation commissioned a survey of its members which found that 77% of firms believed that staying in the EU would be best for business, while 9% said leaving would be the better outcome.
"UK automotive is globally competitive, securing record levels of investment, creating tens of thousands of jobs annually and exporting to over 100 countries," said Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive. "We want this success to continue rather than jeopardise it by increasing costs, making our trading relationships uncertain and creating new barriers to our single biggest and most important market, Europe."
"Remaining will allow the UK to retain the influence on which the unique and successful UK automotive sector depends," he added.