The UK would be left "permanently poorer", with households across the country £4,300 ($6,104) a year worse off, after a Brexit – according to the Treasury. The Treasury has published its economic analysis into the UK's membership of the 28-nation bloc.
The research is accompanied by a stark warning from the Chancellor George Osborne, who claimed breaking away from Brussels would be the "most extraordinary self-inflicted wound".
"In a little over two months' time, the people of the UK will decide whether our country should remain in the EU or leave it," the top Conservative declared.
"It's the biggest decision in a generation and will have profound consequences for our economy, for living standards and for Britain's role in the world."
He added: "But what many people saying at the moment is that they don't have enough facts and information to make an informed decision.
"That's why today the government is publishing a rigorous analysis of the long term economic impacts of EU membership and the alternatives.
The Treasury concluded that productivity and Gross Domestic Product (GDP) would be lower in all three alternative post-Brexit scenarios investigated by the department.
The analysis finds that the annual loss of GDP per household under the three alternatives after 15 years would be:
- £2,600 in the case of European Economic Area (EEA) membership like Norway
- £4,300 in the case of a negotiated bilateral agreement
- £5,200 in the case of World Trade Organisation (WTO) membership
The Treasury also argued that the negative impact on GDP would result in "substantially weak" tax receipts:
- £20bn a year lower in the central estimate of the EEA
- £36bn a year lower for a negotiated bilateral agreement
- £45bn a year lower for a WTO alternative
But former Conservative cabinet minister John Redwood claimed pro-EU campaigners were "wrong then and they are wrong now".
"The prime minister was one of the senior advisers working in the Treasury while John Major's government tried to keep this country in the EU's disastrous Exchange Rate Mechanism [ERM].
"The ERM destroyed jobs and caused misery for families across the country," the 'leave' campaigner told the Press Association. He added: "People should not trust their judgement on the EU."
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