Why I’m still positive on our post-EU trade


Why I’m still positive on our post-EU trade

John Redwood discusses why he remains positive in his outlook for Britain’s international trade post-Brexit. 

On Monday, I asked the Prime Minister to update us on the work the UK is now doing to have a better set of trading arrangements after we leave the EU.

She confirmed that the UK is working on transferring the current EU trade agreements with other countries to the UK as well as to the rest of the EU on exit. The two most important are with South Korea and Switzerland, with another 50 with other smaller trading partners. There is every prospect of this happening smoothly. So far, no country who has signed one of these agreements has said they wish to cancel it with the UK or with the rest of the EU as a result of our exit. Why would they? It makes no sense to put up barriers where you have successfully negotiated them down. The new EU/Canada deal will start coming into effect over the next year. That too can novate to the UK and be the basis for an enlarged agreement in due course.

She also confirmed that the UK is working on a new agreement with the USA and with Australia, where the EU does not have one. There will be other countries too where the UK can make progress in preparing a deal prior to exit to speed up signature after exit. The Prime Minister went on to say that the UK was also working on proposals to help the WTO speed more free trade worldwide.

Some remain negative about trade prospects outside the EU, afraid that the EU will impose new and difficult barriers on us. The good news is no EU member state has said it wants to impose tariff barriers on its exports to us, and therefore on our exports to them. Nor has any member state said it wants to stop its people and businesses getting access to the money, investment and financial advice that London provides.

Some on the continent have said they want to repatriate dealings in the Euro to the continent. This is a silly statement. All the time they want the Euro to be a serious global currency like the dollar, widely used around the world, they have to allow non-EU centres to make a market in it. How would the EU stop people buying and selling Euros or Euro denominated bonds outside their area? And why would the world then take their currency seriously?

We will doubtless face another year or more of posturing. All the time interests in the UK try to force the UK to weaken its position over the future relationship there will be voices on the continent demanding we do so. They cannot believe their luck that so many in the UK establishment are still out to weaken the UK’s clear, optimistic and positive proposals on movement of people, future trade and collaboration.


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  • John Redwood MP
    John Redwood MP
    John Redwood is the Member of Parliament for Wokingham in Berkshire. He was formerly Secretary of State for Wales in Prime Minister John Major's Cabinet. He is currently Co-Chairman of the Conservative Party's Policy Review Group on Economic Competitiveness.
    • bobsworth

      “Why I’m still positive on our post-EU trade”

      That’s because you’re a fucking idiot Deadwood. A fucking idiot who understands fuck-all about our existing economy with its largely foreign-owned exporting sector which largely located in the UK to serve the European market. A fucking idiot who wouldn’t recognise an integrated supply chain if it smacked you in the mouth. A fucking idiot who refuses to engage with the reality that the EU has existing free trade deals with Canada, South Korea, Japan and South Africa, and is negotiating with Australia. A fucking idiot who also refuses to accept that by 2030 both the UK AND the EU will have free trade deals with the USA. And therefore there will be no major economies left in the world to do some magic deal with that the EU hasn’t already got a deal with.

      A fucking idiot who doesn’t understand the basic fact that larger economies get better trade deals – for the blindingly obvious reason that partners are giving themselves a bigger market to sell into. And thus the EU – whose economy is 8 times the size of the UK – will always be offered a better deal by everyone. A fucking idiot who refuses to acknowledge that everyone in the world can see us coming – everyone knows how desperate we are, everyone will drive a very very hard bargain.

      This country’s future is being trashed by the delusions and lies of fucking idiots like Deadwood. Shame on you, you stupid, lying dogmatist.

      • Budgie

        Nothing in your foul-mouthed rant is a reason to give up our independence. You give no factual reasons why we cannot trade under WTO rules and make our own trade deals with any other non-EU country after leaving the EU.

        The UK already exports about 50% more to the rest of the world than we do to the EU, despite the EU being on our doorstep, and despite being restricted by EU membership. Only about 10% of UK GDP consists of exports to the EU. The other c90% is rather more important. Grow up and stop having teenage tantrums.

      • agdpa

        Perhaps you should consider starting some long-term psychotherapy. You strike me as being very disturbed and irrational.

        • bobsworth

          You’re a fucking twat, so you wouldn’t know which way’s up mate.

      • timbo_21
    • Andrew Mitchell

      Great Britain, thank you for your post, its good to hear someone in business that thinks Brexit will be a good thing not as the remoaners would have us believe a nightmare, I’m sick to death of the BBC and Channel 4 constantly telling people that Brexit is going to be bad, people should look back at what the exact same people said about adopting the euro, then all their doom & gloom stories before the referendum, such as the stock market would crash, as would the housing market, inward investment would end, we would go into recession, 500,000 job loses in the days after a leave vote going onto 3 million, all this and more, all wrong! The EU has to date, never been able to solve any issue its been faced with, mass migration that started 7 yrs ago, today the same, the euro a problem when born and a problem today, the list goes on, finally, the EU has been unable to have its own financial accounts signed off for 22yrs on the bounce, if they say we owe them more than £2.50 I’d want to see proof!

    • Derek

      The result of Brexit is unknown. Companies are already decisions to minimise the risks to their company whatever the outcome.

      • Great Briton

        Thank you for your comment Derek but either English is not your first language or you missed some important words out.

        John Redwood is entirely correct. My company imports from various companies around Europe, but mostly Germany. We have not even had a single conversation with any of them about Brexit because I am pretty sure they don’t want to put any barriers to trade in our way.

        Joe Public doesn’t really understand what a closed shop the EU is and how much it actually costs us to be a member in terms of tariffs that they impose to keep cheaper goods out. If they did understand, nobody would vote to stay in.

        At some point we will reach a tipping point where the Remainers will realise it’s game over and all opposition will disappear.

        In a few years time, the lying politicians will be saying they never wanted to stay in the EU, even though there are recorded interviews of them saying the opposite (think Nick Clegg)

        • Derek

          Jaguar Land Rover say their most important market is the EU. JLR will open a factory in Slovakia in 2018. This reduces their risks whatever any final Brexit agreement. Other companies will be mitigating risks in a similar manner. Trump and the EU both stress the importance of manufacturing inside their states. Globalisation is on the back foot nowadays. It’s not the job of private companies to put barriers in the way of trade. That role belongs to purely to politicians.and bureaucrats. In the case of the EU the Commission will be our negotiating enemy.

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