BEERG Brexit Briefing: UK Trade to be Undermined by Relatively Weak Bargaining Position Once Outside EU

October 06, 2017

BEERG Executive Director Tom Hayes writes in the Brexit Briefing blog that the UK's reliance on gold as an export underlines its reliance on membership in the EU for clout in international trade negotiations, a dynamic underestimated by Brexit proponents with looming consequences.  He writes, "Those favoring the UK's departure from the EU have claimed, long and loudly, that once outside the EU the UK would be first in the queue to sign a sweetheart trade deal with the U.S.  They appear to believe that global trade negotiations are conducted in accordance with the elegant theories found in economic textbooks.  No such thing.  They are knockdown, drag-out, bare-knuckle fights.  Dominated by the economic self-interest of powerful players.  Fairness and justice has got nothing to do with it.  Bringing 'fairness and justice' to a trade negotiation is akin, as one commentator has noted, to bringing a 'chocolate spoon to a knife fight.'"