G7: Brexit is up there with terrorism as a key global threat

G7 leaders have warned of the risk to the global economy if Britain leaves the EU in a referendum next month, bracketing a so-called Brexit with terrorism and the refugee crisis as a threat of “non-economic origin.”

“A UK exit from the EU would reverse the trend towards greater global trade and investment, and the jobs they create, and is a further serious risk to growth,” the leaders said in a communique released yesterday at a summit in Ise-Shima, central Japan.

“Escalated geopolitical conflicts, terrorism and refugee flows are complicating factors in the global economic environment.”

British prime minister David Cameron has focused on the danger to growth and jobs of choosing to leave the 28-nation bloc in the June 23 vote. 

While German chancellor Angela Merkel said that the UK’s place in the EU had not been a major subject for discussion at the summit, she said leaders wanted to show their support for the British premier.

“It’s not just me saying that there are economic risks from Britain leaving the EU, it is now a pretty large consensus that includes people of impeccable independence and academic standing,”

Mr Cameron told reporters after the summit.

 “I think that when you have that sort of agreement it is really worth listening to.”

He repeatedly cited the support of multinational bodies, including the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, as he campaigns to keep Britain in the EU. 

He already had the individual support of G7 leaders.

Asked if he stood by a comment in November that Britain could “thrive” outside the EU, Mr Cameron said the UK is an “amazing country” but would perform better if it stays in the bloc.

“The question for us is not are we a great country, have we got a brilliant economy, have we got talented businesses, have we got great entrepreneurs, have we got amazing universities, brilliant scientists? 

Can we go on as we have in the past, breaking new boundaries in all these areas? The question is how do we do best?”

Bloomberg

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