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Ryanair begins campaign for Britain to stay in EU

Ryanair is launching a campaign for the ‘Yes’ vote in the upcoming EU referendum, with chief executive Michael O’Leary saying “it’s absolutely clear that the UK economy and its future growth prospects are stronger as a member of the European Union than they are outside of the EU".

The airline has put its marketing power behind a print campaign featuring Union flags acting as bullet points for its main arguments for staying in Europe against a backdrop of Ryanair planes flying over the Houses of Parliament.

It believes staying in the EU will lead to more UK jobs, better economic growth and (crucially for Ryanair) “open skies” and what that means for tourism. However, it agrees that the EU needs reform “to reduce bureaucracy and become more efficient for the benefit of Europe’s consumers”.

In a press release outlining its position, Ryanair linkened a Britain out of the EU as akin to Norway where it "will still obey the rules, but will have no influence over decision making".

“Leaving Europe won’t save the UK money or red tape because like Norway the UK will still have to contribute to Europe, and obey its rules if it wants to continue to trade freely with Europe, so it’s clear that UK voters should vote Yes to Europe and Yes to the reformed Europe, that David Cameron has delivered,” said O’Leary.

“Ryanair, our people and I hope the vast majority of our customers, will all work together over the coming months to help deliver a resounding Yes vote on June 23rd.”