EU referendum: Terra Firma boss Guy Hands wants UK to stay in EU arguing Russia would be the only winner from Brexit

James Nickerson
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Vladimir Putin's Russia would gain from Brexit, Hands said (Source: Getty)

Russia is the only certain winner from Brexit, a prominent City financier has warned ahead of the impending EU referendum.

Terra Firma boss Guy Hands said that Britain should stay in the EU, arguing the whole discussion around Britain's potential exit from the EU was an example of how "we take peace for granted".

"The risks to European peace that are being encouraged by the success of extremist parties across Europe, about how the only certain winners from Britain leaving the EU will be Russia,” he said.

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Hands added that the "Leave" campaign were using Brexit as an attempt to recover national pride after the "humiliation" of the end to British ambition during the Suez crisis, some fifty years ago.

Speaking at the annual SuperReturn conference in Berlin, Hands explained:

This is key to understanding why the UK is now considering leaving the EU, as some in Britain try to pull up the drawbridge to Europe and hope that by doing so that the problems of living in a global world will go away and that Britain can go back to a golden age.

In spite of "their obvious failings and need for reform", institutions such as the EU and the United Nations have "made the world a better place", he added.

Read more: Tony Blair says Brexit could lead to the break up of the UK

The comments today run counter to those he made in October, when he predicted the EU might not exist in 15 years time due to weak leadership, political extremism and the scale of immigration.

However, even back then he was pessimistic about a world without the EU: "And I'm pretty sure if it doesn't exist we'll have wars in Europe. Whether they're internal wars or wars between countries I don't know but as sure as night follows day, we'll have wars."

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