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The Debate begins: ‘Leaving the EU would damage the UK economy’

Accountancy Age and Financial Director are delighted to present our second ‘Debate’, which has started today.

Following our hugely successfully debate on the issue of tax avoidance, we now consider whether leaving the EU would damage the UK economy.

Taking on the Debate, sponsored by the FD Summit 2013, are some of the most important and influential commentators on Europe.

On one side is Business for New Europe (BNE) director Phillip Souta. The BNE is chaired by Roland Rudd, and boasts a plethora of senior business and political figures on its advisory council, including: Lord Brittan; Sir Roger Carr; Sir Philip Hampton; Sir Mike Rake; and Sir Martin Sorrell.

Opposing Souta is UKIP economist Tim Congdon. He recently produced UKIP’s ‘Europe Doesn’t Work’ report, and the party is riding high in the polls, with some putting them ahead of the Conservatives.

Our guest speaker is Ernst & Young chief economist Mark Gregory. He has over 25 years’ experience in more than 40 countries as an advisor to the Governments and industry on economics, policy and regulation. This includes working with the Governments of Argentina and the World Bank to develop solutions to the debt and economic crisis in 1989 and 1990.

And don’t forget the vital role that you play in the Debate, as your votes and comments add to the discussion during the course of the week.

The debate is an interactive forum where the audience can discuss important topical issues, using an ‘Oxford-style’ debate, across the course of a week.

There are five main protagonists:

The Proposer: In this debate, BNE director Phillip Souta proposes that leaving the EU would damage the UK economy.

The Opposer: In this debate, UKIP’s Tim Congdon opposes Souta’s view.

The Guest: Our expert ‘guest’, Ernst & Young’s Mark Gregory, gives his opinion – independent of the proposer and opposer – on the second day of the debate.

The Moderator: Accountancy Age editor Kevin Reed will act as moderator for the debate, providing further thoughts and background to the issue being discussed, as it progresses.

You: The audience can interact with the debate at every stage. As the debate progresses day-by-day – which will include further statements from Souta and Congdon – a live online comment section will appear for you to give your opinion and discuss the debate with other audience members. You can vote at any point when the debate is live to determine an overall ‘winner’ – and you can change your mind as many times as you want until the debate closes.

The debate begins today, and runs until Thursday 28 March. The whole debate will remain archived on the site to view. Click here to visit the Debate

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