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Our future is in Europe; COMMENT.

TODAY we nail our colours to the mast and come out in support of a Remain vote in June 23's historic referendum.

The move is backed by the firm belief staying in the EU is in Wales' best interests, pure and simple.

Because this is not the time for a vote to leave that will trigger at least two years of torrid divorce negotiations and push Britain into another recession.

When our nation is battling to save the steel industry and the scars of the recession have yet to heal, this is not the time to kill precious jobs and pull the shutter down on business. We need urgent investment in infrastructure and skills, and the focus on maximising economic growth.

Exiting the EU will not provide this and the Out campaign has failed to provide a credible vision of life outside the EU that would justify renewed unemployment, risking livelihoods or thrusting our major trade opportunities into uncertainty.

Yes, there are frustrating aspects about the EU but we believe the UK should show leadership in aiming to change these rather than dive into the dark in 10 days' time.

This referendum is one of the biggest questions on which any of us will ever get to cast a vote. It may well be a knife-edge referendum and the votes of Wales could make the difference - together, we can stop Britain being plunged into years of destabilising isolation, rancour and constitutional crisis.

A UK exit would also deny young people in Wales the opportunity to live and work in Europe that until now they have taken for granted. And our departure could hasten the unravelling of the EU just at the moment democracies are challenged by extremists, the far right and Russian interference.

We do not just ask you to vote to stay in the EU next week. We ask you to urge your friends, family and colleagues to also reject Brexit.

And that's because a Britain outside the EU will not be richer, kinder, safer, fairer or healthier.

Let us not vote to leave but vote to lead Europe in the decades ahead with pride, confidence, courage and goodwill.

Wales and the UK will be stronger in.

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jun 13, 2016
Words:368
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