Andrew R.T Davies is Leader of the Welsh Conservatives in the National Assembly for Wales and an Assembly member for South Wales Central
For Wales, the United Kingdom is simply too important to dismiss. The Welsh border with England is one of the most porous anywhere – both economically and demographically. Around half of the Welsh population and 10 per cent of the English population live within 25 miles of the border (only 3 per cent of the Scottish population live within the same distance with England by comparison). With this level of interdependence and geographic proximity, it is all the more important to stress how important the United Kingdom really is. It isn’t just a flag or a name – it is about the way we live.
The single market that the UK enjoys has been amongst the most successful of any ever created. Whilst the European continent is almost unrecognisable as a political entity from what it was 306 years ago, the United Kingdom has avoided the same internal turmoil, maintaining its position as a world power - the sixth economy of the world and a cultural and social union united through its diversity. Yet whilst it has existed for as long as it has, it can no longer be taken for granted. There are some in Scotland and in Wales who believe that it holds us back; that it is no longer relevant. They don’t see is how special our Union really is - that Union is about strength of diversity as well as economic and political power.