|Great Britain or Poor Britain?|
The release of the publication by the Treasury, complete with complex algebraic calculations, is an important moment before a referendum, to take place June 23, on whether Britain should end more than four decades of integration and quit the 28-nation bloc.
Those who oppose a British withdrawal from the European Union, known as “Brexit,” say that it would inevitably lead to economic uncertainty and deter investment, and that it could complicate ties with the bloc, the country’s biggest trade partner.
On Monday, the government put a number on that claim, asserting that, under one midrange situation, annual economic output would be 4,300 pounds, around $6,100, lower per household if Britain left than if it stayed in the bloc.
.In any event, the chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, said at a speech in Bristol, England, that the country “would be permanently poorer if it left the European Union” because “we’d trade less, do less business and receive less investment.”
Mr. Osborne, who with Prime Minister David Cameron is campaigning for Britons to vote to remain, added: “The price would be paid by British families. Wages would be lower, and prices would be higher.”
Those advocating an exit, including dissenters in the governing Conservative Party, quickly dismissed the analysis. Andrea Leadsom, a government minister who used to work in the Treasury, called it “extraordinarily biased.”
The release of the document highlights the quickening tempo of the referendum campaign, which officially began last week.
And it precedes a visit to Britain this week by President Obama, who is expected, if asked, to endorse continued British membership in the bloc but to note that it is a decision for British voters.
Read more: Britons Will Be Poorer if They Leave E.U., Government Asserts - The New York Times