We enter these negotiations with an advantageby Owen Paterson / April 3, 2017 / Leave a comment
Last autumn I wrote for this magazine that as we enter Brexit negotiations, we do so from a position of strength. Now, after the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill has received Royal Assent and the prime minister has invoked Article 50, the two-year long countdown to leaving the EU begins; the arguments in my last article still hold true.
In 2016, the UK economy grew by 1.8 per cent; growing faster than countries such as Japan and the United States. The UK has continued to experience a period of robust economic growth, record levels of employment and a falling deficit.
This is expected to continue as the Office for Budget Responsibility now forecasts GDP growth of 2.0 per cent in 2017. PricewaterhouseCoopers predicts that over the next three decades, UK economic growth will outpace growth in France and Germany and double the pace of growth in Italy. PwC went on to say in the same report that if we forge new trade ties with faster-growing emerging economies we can cement our status as one of the engines of global growth.
Most economic forecasters suggest that the global economy will continue to grow at a steady pace and the IMF predicts that Indonesia, Brazil, India and Mexico will climb the projected GDP rankings. The so-called E7 group (short for “Emerging 7”) includes these countries and the IMF estimates that, as a group, they could be double the size of the G7 by 2040. We will soon be best placed to sign bilateral free trade agreements with each of these fast-growing nations.
The share of UK exports to the EU will continue to decline. In 1999, 61 per cent of UK trade was with the EU, now it is 43 per cent. By 2025, it has been projected that exports to the EU will account for under 35 per cent of UK trade. The European Union’s internal market is important to us and we want to continue with reciprocal free trade with our friends and allies on the continent. Independent countries can and do trade successfully with Europe, without having to be a member of their internal market.
Barclays released their report UK trade…