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Express: Brexiteer John Longworth rages at ‘EU madness’ and blames Brussels for youth unemployment

Date: 12 01 2017

Brexiteer John Longworth rages at ‘EU madness’ and blames Brussels for youth unemployment

A RAGING Brexiteer says it would have been madness for Britain to stay in the European Union – blaming the crumbling bloc for Europe’s youth unemployment problem.

John Longworth, co-chair of Leave Means Leave, also took the opportunity to accuse Germany of being one of the few beneficiaries of the euro and the EU, claiming it was the country to have benefited most from the .

The ex-director general of the British Chambers of Commerce said despite youth unemployment numbers being better than they were, Britain’s decision to divorce from Brussels would improve the figures even more.

Speaking during a fiery clash with Cobra Beer chairman Lord Bilimoria on Sky News, Mr Longworth said the number of unemployed young people in Britain was unacceptable.

He said: “There is 12.5 percent of the under 25’s [unemployed], which is a scandalous figure when you look at unemployment generally in the UK.”

According to the latest figures, unemployment across the UK is currently at an 11-year low with 1.65 million people out of work. 

When challenged that the numbers were much higher in other parts of the EU, such as 58 percent in Spain, the Brexiteer fought back: “That’s why it would be madness to stay in the when you have massively high numbers of unemployment.” 

On Monday it was revealed the Italian economy was also close to serious turmoil after to 39 per cent. 

A total of 627,000 under 25’s are now out of work in the crisis-hit country and with some of its largest firms now looking to slash jobs the figure could increase.

Lord Bilimoria, a staunch Remainer, accused Mr Longworth and fellow voters of jeopardising Britain’s recent economic success by quitting the bloc. 

He said: “The country that has had the highest GDP growth rate in the EU is Great Britain, it is higher than Germany, higher than France.

“We’ve had the best of both worlds, we’re not in Schengen, we’re not in the euro, we have our sovereignty and now you’re jeopardising all that.” 

In reply, Mr Longworth said: “The country that has done the best out of the European Union is Germany and you know that very well.”

He said Germany, which is heavily supported by its manufacturing exports, especially cars, for being “able to maintain an artificially low currency”.

“They then export to the detriment of Mediterranean countries who’ve actually suffered very badly from the EU,” he exclaimed.

The business chief also took the opportunity to put a case forward for leaving the single market.

He said: “The word access [to the single market] I find very odd, because everybody has access to the European Union, China and the United States export billions of pounds of stuff every year.

“They’re not members of the single market, nor do they have a trade deal. Everybody can sell into the European Union, this access is a red herring.” 

January 12th, 2017: Express