A majority of people in Britain would vote against joining the single European currency if there were a referendum, according to new research from MORI Financial Services. As part of regular research for citigroup, the first question asks 'If there were a referendum now on whether Britain should be part of a single European currency, how would you vote?' The results show the share in favour of EMU entry edged down to 24% in September from 27% in June, with a rise in the share against to 61% from 59%. Thus, the balance against EMU entry rose to 37% from 32%, and is the highest since November 2000. A further 14% say they do not know how they would vote.
When asked in the second question how they would vote 'if the Government were to strongly urge that Britain should be part of a single European currency', there is a slight fall, of four per cent, of those who would vote yes from June to 28%, and a rise, of four per cent, of those who would vote no to 59%. A steady 13% maintain they do no know how they would vote. The balance against being 'strongly urged' to join the EMU rose to 31% from 24% in June.
The latest survey was conducted over the period 18–23 September, hence covering the period just after Sweden's 'no' vote. That vote may have played a role in the drop in support for EMU, but it probably is not the only factor.
Figure 1. UK — Attitudes to EMU Entry (Question is "If the Government were to strongly urge that Britain should be part of a single European currency, how would you vote?"), 1997-2003
1,832 people were interviewed between 18–23 September 2003 by MORI Financial Services.