This week’s poll found more FDs were against joining the new currency than in favour, the first time since January 2000 that such a result has been recorded by the six-monthly survey.
Nearly half of those asked said they did not support the UK entering the euro, compared to just 40% at the beginning of the year. Only one third said they were now in favour of the euro, with one in five remaining neutral.
The poll will be a setback for Tony Blair’s plans for early entry into the euro, which is likely to be voted on in a referendum within two years. Those against the euro include John Buckley, FD at Sauter Automation, who said: ‘The European economy is not in step with the UK economy, and the latter cannot be artificially brought into line.’
‘If the UK joins the euro, it will be subject to inappropriate interest rates and will lose control over its own economic management, as is already happening in the Republic of Ireland, where interest rates are too low.’ Another FD put it more simply: ‘It is not a question of policy, it is a question of sovereignty.’
Supporters of the euro included one FD who said: ‘It would give us a more stable relationship with Europe for trade and London could become a powerful trading area within Europe.’
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