Shadow foreign secretary, Hilary Benn MP, visited Newton Aycliffe as part of the Labour campaign to remain in the European Union.
As part of his visit, Mr Benn joined local MP Phil Wilson to visit the new University Technical College South Durham (UTC), which is due to open in September.
Built in partnership with Hitachi Rail Europe, Gestamp, and the University of Sunderland, the South Durham UTC is situated in Newton Aycliffe Business Park, and is the first of its kind in the region.
Speaking to the Northern Echo Mr Benn highlighted the importance of EU membership to the North East in securing jobs for future generations. He said “I’m here to see this fantastic new investment that will serve young people in the area.
“Science and technology is so important to the region and young people who come here will be very lucky.
“A significant proportion of UK exports to the EU leave from the North-East and the EU is the largest single market in the world. Why would you want to walk away from that?”
In addition, the shadow foreign secretary explained that in addition to investment and economic growth, the EU would continue to improve workers’ rights.
Commenting on Mr Benn’s visit Sedgefield MP Phil Wilson said, “Membership of the EU is vital for jobs, prosperity, and the security of the North East.
“Our membership of the EU has helped Newton Aycliffe attract companies like Hitachi Rail Europe, and helped other companies such as Gestamp expand and grow.
“I want Newton Aycliffe, and the North East to continue to attract new businesses and for business already here to grow. The EU plays an important role in making that happen”
Phil Wilson will continue to campaign for the UK to remain a member of the EU until the referendum of June 23rd.