A new report released by British Influence shows that 191,000 jobs and 14 percent of the workforce in Wales are directly linked to EU trade, a 12.7 percent increase from 1997 – 2011.
The report also shows that British exports to the EU bring in £3,500 per head each year and are responsible for 13.3 percent of jobs in the UK.
Welsh Labour MEP Derek Vaughan said:
"This research shows one in seven Welsh jobs are directly linked to EU trade and with 50 percent of the UK’s exports going to the EU, it’s clear that this partnership is very important for our economy.
Europe is our largest trading partner and more than 600 firms across the country export goods and services worth around £5bn every year to other EU countries.
Our membership of the EU is a major attraction for companies from across the world looking to invest in Wales as it provides them with access to the EU’s Single Market of over 500 million consumers.
Wales attracted over £1bn in inward investment projects in 2012 – a massive rise on the previous year, creating and safeguarding 7,500 jobs in Wales. If the UK were to leave the EU and these companies had to start paying trade tariffs, it would be naive to believe that access to these markets would remain.
Vodafone, Ford, Airbus, Tata, GE, Nissan, Honda, Siemens, Citi Bank, BMW, Hitachi and many others have already expressed their concern about us leaving the EU."
Mr Vaughan added:
"The European market is the world's biggest and that's important because its size can be used to broker agreements with new markets. This will be essential in future as we will increasingly be relying on trade with emerging economies like China and India."