The Benefits of the EU.
CAP is being reformed, albeit slowly, prices are being brought closer to world levels; the EU is targeting subsidies to those farmers who need. This process is not complete but it shows reforms can be made. This will lead to better trade negotiations in the future.
2. Bureaucracy Costs Relatively Low
Bureaucracy costs represent a very small % of the EU budget. The UK contribution to the EU is also quite small, only 1.5% of GDP. The UK makes a contribution of £14.2 billion (£4.7 billion net after rebates and grants). This comprises payments of £2.2 billion to European institutions, £15 billion for the Common Agricultural Policy, £1 billion for the Common Fisheries Policy.
3. Benefits of Free Movement of Labour
Free Movement of Labour and People has many benefits. The UK has had labour market shortages. Immigrants have filled in various undesirable jobs. It also enables UK residents to travel and work abroad, without restrictions.
4. Increased Trade and Inward Investment
As a result of its EU membership, the UK has benefitted from inward investment and increased trade. 67% of UK trade is with the EU.
In 2003 an EU commission investigated the benefits of the single market and estimated that EU Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2002 was 1.8% higher (€164.5 billion) [£110 billion] than it would have been without the Single Market. (1) Although it is difficult for economists to arrive at such statistics.
5. Social Policies.
In the past the UK has benefitted from regional and social policies, these have given grants to depressed areas, such as, Wales and North East England. However in recent years the net inflows have been less.
7. Increased Competition
Through the EU competition policy, the European Union is able to examine cartels and the competitiveness of markets. This is important in an era of globalisation. For example and EU investigation into football replica shirts led to widespread reductions in prices for consumers
8. Lower Transaction costs
Abolition of tariffs and harmonisation of regulations have helped reduce transaction costs.