08/01/2017

EU membership worth £57 million a year to the Ceredigion economy

In recent years the Ceredigion economy has been directly benefitting by an average of £57.6 million a year from our European Union membership, according to Ceredigion Council officers and based on figures from the Centre for European Reform.

£44 million of this is CAP payments to farmers and the rest is structural funds and research grants to our universities. The figures equate to £768 per person in the county per year. The more indirect benefits, like trade and hosting EU students are not included in these figures

Ceredigion is unusual in that our economy is much more dependent than most on a combination of agriculture and higher education, two sectors that receive considerable money from Europe. In addition we receive structural funds due to our status within the EU as a ‘less developed region’. This combination makes us particularly vulnerable if our present EU funding is not directly replaced to the same level when (if?) Brexit happens.

With the nature and economic conditions of any future Brexit in a state of extreme uncertainty at the moment, the idea of the Westminster government being in a position to simply replace all of this money - even if it wanted to - seems highly optimistic. Even if they agreed to replace three quarters of it, that would still amount to a loss of over £14 million a year to the Ceredigion economy.

4 comments:

  1. 53% Brexit vote in Wales and the region quoted in this article will be like Cornwall in terms of high level of Brexit votes. Why? because as I heard a gentleman say at a hustings in Nottingham. 'Folk are fed up of being poor and your region being on EU subsidy all the time ceases to satisfy'
    What's more to the point is will 'Plaid Cymru' push hard for fresh investment into Wales in the Assembly in order to more than replace subsidies?

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  2. "53% Brexit vote in Wales and the region quoted in this article will be like Cornwall in terms of high level of Brexit votes."
    Ceredigion voted to Remain by 54.6% to 45.4%
    http://bronglais.blogspot.co.uk/2016/07/aberystwyth-and-ceredigions-vote-to.html

    "Will 'Plaid Cymru' push hard for fresh investment into Wales in the Assembly in order to more than replace subsidies?"
    I would hope everyone in the Assembly will push for the money currently coming into Wales from the EU to be replaced. The UK has the second greatest wealth inequality in Western Europe (next to Portugal). You also have to bear in mind that the great majority of the funding referred to comes to Ceredigion not because we're poor (which we are) but because we have a lot of farmers.

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  3. Is it about the scraps from the EU table? This is what you want? EU control of farming? What if they decide to go down the route of GMO's. Politics are sick at the moment. You think the engine is money... The real engine are people. It is people who come up with ideas, it is people who work, create and evolve systems. What we have now is the opposite. We have a totalitarian system building up around us and our own polititions are signed up to it just because they want to survive as a political force.... The people will always be here, systems come and go, get on the right side of history for once...

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  4. There are many things wrong with EU farming policy. However there's no question that right now Ceredigion receives a considerable amount of money through it. The question is whether this will be fully replaced by Westminster when/if Brexit happens and the implications for our local economy if it isn't. £57 million isn't 'scraps' to Ceredigion. The question is whether we will get more than scraps from Westminster to replace it.

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