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RTC Backs EU Remain Campaign


Jamie Ollivere
Jun 06, 2016

Vote Remain

RTC North actively supports North East businesses calling for Britain to stay in the European Union.

Hosting a special ‘Remain’ event at its new premises in Sunderland on June 3rd, RTC CEO Gordon Ollivere MBE, called for businesses to step up their campaign to promote an ‘IN’ vote on June 23rd.

The business support and technology transfer company, was originally approached by Richard Swart of Berger Group Europe who is heading up a campaign of North East businesses.  RTC agreed to promote the campaign and to host the first of three industry focused events to be staged over the coming weeks.

The breakfast event involved a panel session that included the Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Lisa Nandy, MP and Bridgette Phillipson MP, Richard Swart, Richard Bradley from Dyer Engineering and Chris Jukes from the GMB union.

Gordon Said: “The overriding feeling from our panel and from our delegates was that we need to really focus on what is positive about Europe. It is a massive market for UK businesses and the funding that comes from Europe underpins our regional economic growth, employment and skills training.

“The economic arguments have been won already but it’s not just about money.  It’s also about quality of life, living in peace and being taken seriously in the modern world.  We have to argue with our hearts as well as our heads and communicate these messages over the next few weeks.”

An open letter headed up by Richard Swart has now been signed by 150 North East business leaders. Together, the signatories employ thousands of people in the region and represent a range of industries in all geographical areas.

Further events will be held on Wednesday 8th June at Invicta Public Affairs Offices Newcastle contact rebecca.ramsdale@invictapa.co.uk to register,  Thursday 9th June, NEPIC Ltd Offices Wilton, contact lynne.aungiers@nepic.co.uk to register and Friday 17th June Brasserie Hudson Quay Middlesbrough contact dianne@greenlanecapital.co.uk to register.

The open letter says:

“Businesses in the North East need unrestricted access to the European market of 500m people in order to continue to grow, invest and create jobs.

“We support the UK remaining a member of the European Union, and add our voice to the major unions, business organisations, manufacturers, local government leaders, major party leaders and our international allies and friends sharing this common desire.

“We recognise the EU is not perfect. However, we also recognise that the UK has benefitted enormously since the joining in 1975, making the terrible ‘70s a distant past, and helping in no small measure to make the UK one of the strongest economies in the world.

“We believe that leaving the EU would deter investment, threaten jobs and put the North East economy at risk.”

Among those signing the letter are Right Reverend Paul Butler, Bishop of Durham, Geoff Ford of South Shields’ Ford Engineering Group, Mike Matthews from North East Business of the Year Nifco and Prof Roy Sandbach, chair of the innovation board at the North East LEP. If you would like to offer your name as a signatory please contact Richard Swart at richswartbusiness@btinternet.com.