Column: On EU referendum day an Italian view on our fair and courageous country

So this historic day has finally arrived and we are all striving to make the right decision for our country and for future generations.

Wednesday, 22nd June 2016, 4:54 pm
Updated Wednesday, 22nd June 2016, 6:58 pm
An Italian view on the EU referendum in Britain

It is of course a personal one and very much your choice which way you swing. So many factors have come into the mix; not least bickering politicians and a difficulty in finding the truth from the arguments put forward on both sides.

And yes, it has to be said that both sides have made some valid points. In fact, I think many of us have become more and more confused over the weeks and less sure of what the outcomes will be. But there’s one thing that has been a bit absent I feel: What about the views of our fellow Europeans on Brexit?

What’s their take on the whole thing? I’m not talking about MEPs but normal citizens of Europe. How do they feel?

So I asked an Italian friend, Giuseppe Giuggi Dimonte from Barletta, Italy, to give his point of view and this is what he said: “In the Italian collective imagination, Great Britain represents different things: tradition and innovation, a strong sense of identity and a global outlook, rule of Law and common sense, efficiency and flexibility.

“Furthermore, from a political and economic perspective, the United Kingdom is synonymous with stable government, efficient public administration, a fast and fair judiciary system, and an internal open economic system: as I see it, that is the very opposite of how Italy is.

“For all these reasons, many Italians see Britain as a land of opportunities, a country in which to study, work, make business and live.

“The Italians, as Britons do, perceive the European Union as a bureaucratic giant, unfit to pay attention to his citizens.

“That’s why the British government has been very courageous to hold a referendum in order to hear the voice of their citizens about the future of their country within the European Union.

“This is an example of real democracy, and even in this occasion the pragmatic spirit of British people will lead to the right choice.”

All the best today.