The Centre for Policy Studies held three key events at the Conservative Party Conference Fringe 2012.
Now is the time to construct a radically different relationship between the UK and the EU, a relationship based on the concept of variable geometry.
An “opt-in principle” is needed, to enable the UK to decide on a case by case basis whether to adopt EU laws, directives and regulations. This would extend to every policy area with the single exception of the single market (which needs common rules and thus the opt-in principle would not be applicable).
The electorate should be asked whether it accepts or rejects a comprehensive reform treaty which puts the UK-EU relationship on a new footing. The UK would then be in a position of strength to create a EU of opt-ins – an EU which would be liberating, forward-looking and global.
John Hayes MP, Tony Lodge, Alexey Kalinin, Stephen Tindale
Nuclear generating capacity is forecast to fall by 75% in the next few years. Another 12,000MW of diverse generating capacity (out of a total of 90,000MW) will close by 2016 due to EU rules. Any further delays in approving new nuclear plant will mean this plant will not make a net contribution to UK electricity supply before 2025, at the earliest. Last winter, coal plants shouldered nearly 50% of electricity demand. The Government risks filling the nuclear delay ‘gap’ with yet more gas-fired plant. The UK could be dependent on gas for over 80% of electricity generation by 2025.
What is the alternative? Should the Coalition approve what CPS author Tony Lodge called for in ‘The Atomic Clock’ - a fair and balanced nuclear power delivery strategy which rewards all new atomic power investors?
Andrea Leadsom MP, Fraser Nelson, Otto Thoresen, George Trefgarne
In July 2012, the Bank of England said it would inject another £50bn into the economy, taking the total size of the quantitative easing programme to £375bn. Is this a prerequisite to getting the economy moving again or an unnecessary and ill-advised risk? CPS/ABI event.
For more on our full events programme in the coming months, visit our events page.
Andrea Leadsom MP