Cameron reveals 2017 EU referendum

Published Wednesday, 23 January 2013
Toggle font size

Prime Minister David Cameron has promised to hold an in/out referendum on EU membership, should the Conservatives win at the next general election.

Cameron reveals 2017 EU referendum
Cameron said there will be a referendum on the EU if his party remains in power. (© UTV)

Speaking at the House of Commons on Wednesday, David Cameron said he wants to negotiate a better deal for the UK within the European Union before any poll is held.

It is anticipated that the referendum on the future within the union will be hled before the end of 2017.

"The fact is we are not comfortable with the state of our membership today, it does need to change," he said.

"I'm setting out the path for how we change that, how we put that to the British people and in the end they will decide."

Northern Ireland has received millions of pounds of peace funding from Europe and membership within the EU has benefited its export market, representing around £2.5bn to the local economy.

The Confederation of British Industry (CBI) in NI believe retaining a firm link with the EU is key to economic growth in the region.

"Having access to free trade of services and goods is critically important to Northern Ireland," said Nigel Smyth from CBI.

"If Northern Ireland is going to grow, it's got to be through exports. It's fair to say some of those exports need to be further afield than Europe. But Europe is such a big part of the economy it is critical we are a part of that."

Draft legislation will be drawn up by the Conservative Party ahead of the election, and will be enacted by the end of 2015 if Tories win to pave the way for renegotiation and referendum within the next two years, he said.

"It is time for the British people to have their say," Mr Cameron said.

"It is time to settle this European question in British politics."

© UTV News
Comments Comments
Tong Po in N. Ireland wrote (737 days ago):
If theres a good chance of the UK leaving the EU, then support amongst normal protestants will soar for a United Ireland when the economic costs of this become clear to NI. As usual, northern ireland/6 counties, will be the worst hit region in the UK if the UK decides to leave the EU. Most non conservative british politicans know that its greatly weakening to the UK economy to leave the EU. We all know that its just backward imperialistic british conservative politicans that cant let go of the imperial past that want out of the EU because the UK is not in the driving seat, Germany and France are. Germany and France, especially france, has been very critical of the UK over europe because the UK is not devoted to Europe, it almost doesnt want it to work but the simple reality is europe will continue to grow and intergrate with or without the UK and thats to the UK's great disadvantage, even the USA has said the UK "will not be as valueable to USA if its not in the EU". One of the key relationships between the USA and ROI involves the EU, ROI is at the heart of europe and has a say on almost everything.
Paul in Belfast wrote (738 days ago):
The 2017 referendum is about 4 years to late. Europe costs us far to much for every £3 we spend we get £1 back. Add to that the torrent of bad EU legislation that is force upon us. I am just thankful we didnt join the EURO. We should get out now and start fixing our own country. I would rather join the USA
Robin Bredin in Londonderry wrote (738 days ago):
About time, we never signed up for this. I thought we signed up for a common market.
Email address*:    
House Rules:  
Your Comment:  
[All comments are moderated and will not appear immediately. Your name, location and comment will be displayed on this page if your post passes moderation.]
January snow
Tue 13 January 2015
Wintry weather
Wed 28 January 2015
Ravenhill Road fish spill
Sun 25 January 2015