UK prime minister says EU not ‘flexible’ enough

British prime minister says European Union will not work if not ‘flexible’

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Jul 28, 2015

British Prime Minister David Cameron, speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, has stated that the European Union (EU) will not operate as it should if it cannot show flexibility towards the Greek crisis and the UK’s demands for reform.

Cameron said that the EU should be able to work around countries in and out of the eurozone.

“If it can’t show that flexibility it won’t work as an organisation and I believe that British people will see that,” and added that “This needs to have the flexibility of a network not the rigidity of a bloc.”

The British prime minister speculated that Greece is likely to exit the euro if it refuses bailout terms in a referendum.

On July 5, Greece will hold a referendum over the bailout terms imposed by its Western lenders, including the European Central Bank (ECB), EU Commission and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Cameron noted that Britain wants the European Union and the Greek government come to an agreement.

“If they vote no, I find it hard to see how that’s consistent with staying in the euro because there would be a very significant default and a very significant problem,” he said.

David Cameron had promised the British people a “simple referendum of in or out” of the EU immediately after the country’s May 7 election. The legislation is ready but the anticipated referendum date is 2017.

In the lead-up to the referendum Cameron has campaigned for reforms to the EU including the banning of EU migrants from in-work benefits for four years, the ability of national parliaments to block EU legislation, Britain’s exclusion from the European Union’s historic commitment to an “ever closer union,” as well as guarantees for non-eurozone members not to be outvoted by eurozone members.

David Cameron has promised to achieve these reforms before the in/out referendum in 2017 over the UK’s EU membership.

However, British government officials have confirmed that Britain will likely hold the referendum before any treaty changes take place.

TRTWorld and agencies