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Patrick Minford defends consumer; calls for EU to bring down protectionist barriers

A new paper by Patrick Minford for Global Vision concludes that the EU’s protectionism not only reduces living standards by a steady fraction due to inefficiency in production and consumption; it also retards growth by erecting barriers to the inflow of new capital and technology into new sectors of the economy.

Minford, currently Professor of Applied Economics at Cardiff Business School, says it is time the UK did something about it – either by promoting the idea inside the EU that the hand of those with consumer interests at heart should be strengthened, or by asking for the return of powers over trade and competition so that the British can bring the barriers down.

Global Vision is a new campaign backed by economists and business leaders that calls for a looser British relationship with the EU, free of the coils of economic and political union and encouraging mutually beneficial trade and cooperation. Sounds sensible.

Over dinner I mentioned to an American friend that it seemed to me there were political ideas that worked, and ideas that didn't work. Trying to control economies doesn't work. It's like trying to ignore the law of gravitation, yet a certain type of person relentlessly insists controls work better than freedom. What motivates 'em? It can't just be a job with the EU.

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