After years of on-again, off-again negotiations, the UK and the European Union still haven’t been able to sign a viable trade deal allowing uninterrupted trade between the two countries.
But the UK has faced far bigger challenges in the 20th-century and in every previous century, and wound up victorious every time — therefore, in regards to Brexit, it’s time to cut our losses and move-on, and Leave the European Union just as UK voters instructed their politicians to do back on June 23, 2016.
In fact, all the years of back and forth negotiations, all the friction that’s occurred between the two blocs since 2016, and the billions the UK has handed over in the meantime to continue paying more than their fair share of the EU budget, has resulted in even more needless emotional trauma to all sides.
It’s now patently obvious that a WTO-style Brexit in 2016/17 would have been better for the UK, it’s business community, and for ordinary Britons too, had Britain just ‘up and left’ without a deal and went straight to a WTO trading relationship (beginning January 1, 2017) with the European Union.
Had UK MP’s followed both the letter and spirit of those instructions, the UK would’ve left the European Union on January 1, 2017 (probably on WTO terms) and gotten straight to work on what matters most to Britons — and all of it without a 1389-day delay!
Think about it. 1389-days later (and counting) we’re no closer to a Brexit trade deal with the EU than in January 2017!
After all the gyrations, after all the negative publicity, after all the name-calling, and all that grief — and nothing to show for it 1389-days later. Which I many times predicted throughout the entire Brexit saga.
It isn’t good enough; It isn’t what citizens are paying their politicians for in either bloc. The entire shambolic escapade of (former UK Prime Minister Theresa May) trying to get a deal — while the EU was seemingly trying to not get a deal — has been a colossal waste of everyone’s life. And that translates into a lot of wasted time and money for everyone.
I understood the EU’s position perfectly, it’s just that others didn’t.
The European Union doesn’t want a sudden exodus of countries from it’s bloc and therefore, making the UK’s exit from the EU seem like the biggest ordeal in the world might deter some EU-member nations from leaving.
My point is, UK politicians should’ve known that. They shouldn’t have fallen for so many false narratives/red herrings/obfuscation. But they did — and that’s the problem.
And that disability is called naivety.
European Union leaders shouldn’t be blamed for trying to make Britain’s exit from the EU as difficult as possible; I can relate to that, because if my 2nd-best economic contributor was trying to leave my bloc/organization/family, I’d be tempted to make life difficult for them. But I would hope that I didn’t get too carried away with making them PAY, PAY, PAY! for wanting to leave and skip to the infinitely more important point of trying to arrange a workable new arrangement, ASAP.
And that ability is called maturity.
Therefore, I respectfully call on UK politicians to become much less naive with regard to the European Union’s position (a bloc now proven to not be working in the best interests of the UK — and why would it? It’s in business for the EU) and I respectfully call on EU politicians to begin thinking in much more expedient terms for the remainder of the year so that a viable trade deal can be arranged between the two parties — to benefit citizens and businesses on both sides of the English Channel.
It has been sad watching this miserable dynamic play out during the last few years.
BTW, to celebrate Halloween I am re-watching Shaun of the Dead.
I agree, Tim.
What’s really sad is that I predicted this exact sequence of events all along.
Of course, a hastily cobbled together minimal deal will get done (beginning March 2021 leading to a signing ceremony in May 2021 with implementation to begin July 2021.
And all of that could’ve been accomplished between January 2017 and July 2017, if then-PM Theresa May and the UK Parliament had just kept their nerve.
Always great to read your comments, Tim!
Regarding early next year, the most important issue is whether or not anyone will develop an effective vaccine.
One possibility is that the EU will be under pressure if the UK signs more trade deals with third parties. Especially if the process should appear to gather momentum
In the meantime there may be conflict regarding fish.
Yes, Tim, you’ve hit the nail on the head.
If the UK is signing one trade deal per week, the EU will certainly see that and act differently in their trade negotiations with the UK — compared to the UK signing one trade deal per year.
The UK government must vigorously and robustly pursue trade deals with other countries after January 1, 2021.
An anemic UK government trade policy following January 1 will strengthen the EU”s bargaining position, vis-a-vis trade negotiations with the UK. IMHO.
A few years ago I came across a web site which advocated Import Substitution. Specifically, the UK would seek to create locally made substitutes to replace imports from the EU.
The UK government might be able to apply a bit of pressure by announcing a study of this concept.