BY ROBERT KIMBELL
Has anyone asked a Remain politician recently why they’re still so dedicated to wedding the UK to the EU when it’s a bloc that forces us to pay tens of billions to be involved with it yet doesn’t import enough of our goods or services to enable us to have an equitable balance of trade with it?
Almost inevitably, a Remain politician would respond by claiming that the EU is the world’s largest single market. But it isn’t. The United States of America is. The US economy is more than one third larger (34.4%), according to the IMF.
What next will a Remain politician pull from their armoury?
They would then claim that the EU has kept the peace in Europe since the Second World War. But it hasn’t. NATO has.
The Remain politician would then argue that the UK needs to be in the EU to maintain standards. That’s obvious enough isn’t it?
But the UK doesn’t. After all we’re already members of:
- The WTO (since ’95)
- The G7 (since ’75)
- The G20 (since ’99)
- The OECD (since ’61)
- The FSB (since 2009)
- The ISO (since ’70)
- The ILO (since ’19)
- The Codex Alimentarius Commission (since ’61)
- The WHO (since ’48)
By this stage the Remain politician is running out of answers. Drawing on Project Fear, they would parrot the tired, old threats about trade: “Ah, but the UK needs to be in the EU for all the brilliant trade agreements it has drawn up and concluded for its members,” they’ll argue.
But it hasn’t signed and ratified any trade agreements with the USA, China, India, Brazil, Russia, Australia, Argentina, Indonesia, UAE, Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines, Hong Kong, Kazakhstan, Taiwan or even friendly old New Zealand.
“Well,” they will huff and puff, “far too many British companies are dependent on trade with the EU.”
But they’re not! Just 10% of the UK economy is generated by trade with the EU. And only 8% of UK-based firms are doing business with the EU.
“Ah, but, but, but” they will stammer, “it is a recognised fact that the UK will fall off a ‘cliff-edge’ when we exit the EU.”
But we won’t. More than 70% of targeted continuity trade with countries that have free trade arrangements with the EU has now been assured by the Department for International Trade. There is no cliff edge. You can’t have a cliff edge when there isn’t a cliff!
By this stage the Remain politician will feel broken. They might gurgle, “what about Japan and Canada?”
Well, Japan has signed a Mutual Recognition Agreement with the UK and stated that a future UK–Japan FTA can improve on the existing Japan–EU FTA. And Canada? The federal elections of yesterday will determine so much.
“But how can the UK be more effective at striking Free Trade Agreements than a massive economic bloc such as the EU?”, the exasperated Remain politician might ask, knowing they now face multiple match points.
Well, the answer to that one is that Chile and Switzerland both have as many FTAs as the EU. Comprehensive, bilateral FTAs are more mutually beneficial.
And with that reality shall once again dawn.
“You won, you won,” the Remain politician will scream out, defeated and overpowered.
“Oh, I know,” you will reply, “so get out of our way and give us our damn Brexit.”
And then they’ll be gone.
Robert Kimbell was born in Cambridge and brought up in Northamptonshire. He was a Management Consultant specialising in the field of global executive search. Robert worked for private companies in London and the Far East. His interests include travel, international trade, geopolitics and domestic politics. He is driven by his desire to see Britain reach its ultimate potential.