It is my belief that a Yes vote tomorrow will be a Yes to investment, stability and recovery. It will be a key step on our road to economic recovery, and will be vital as we continue to attract inward investment by helping to bring about the right conditions for growth.
Here in County Clare, like many other parts of the country, we are strongly dependent on both foreign direct investment and also tourist revenue to keep jobs in the county. I strongly believe that voting Yes will help bolster our finances and ensure we continue to attract new business and tourist visitors to the region. Economic stability does matter. Just look at Greece and the difficulties that country is currently experiencing.
It is very significant that a host of groups from across the business, retail, hospitality and agricultural sectors have endorsed a Yes vote. In the world of business and retail, Chambers Ireland, the Irish Exporters Association, Retail Ireland, the Small Firms Association and ISME are just some of the bodies calling for a Yes vote, because they recognise how important the Treaty is for our economic recovery.
In the hospitality sector, which is particularly relevant to us here in County Clare, the Irish Hotels Federation, the Irish Tourist Industry Confederation, the Vintners Association and the Restaurants Association of Ireland are also calling for a Yes vote on May 31st. They know how important stability is at a time when tourism is growing and creating jobs.
The agricultural bodies, including the IFA, the ICMSA, the ICSA and Macra na Feirme are supporting the Treaty because they believe it is in the best interests of our farming sector. Irish agriculture has had a great couple of years, with bumper exports and major opportunities emerging in China and other markets. We already export to 170 countries worldwide. If we want to build on this impressive performance, a Yes vote will be crucial.
As we enter the final days of the campaign, I would encourage everyone to focus on the positive reasons to vote Yes, and to stick to the facts. A Yes vote will give certainty to job creating investors. It will ensure we have access to Europe’s new permanent emergency fund, and it will ensure future governments stick to sensible budget rules.
That is why I am encouraging everyone across County Clare to come tomorrow and vote Yes to a working Ireland.