back to article CBI: Brexit Britain needs a 'sensible and flexible' immigration programme

Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme to recruit and retain overseas talent in a post-Brexit Britain. The call from the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) came as it emerged that European Union citizens have started to look to countries other than Britain to take up working positions. CBI deputy …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    "Maybe, just maybe, some people voted to leave the EU because of reasons other than immigration?"

    Perhaps. But I have yet to find one who isn't a Little Englander or simply clever enough to say that to give plausible deniability to their racism, xenophobia, supremacism or isolationist nationalism.

    One only needs to read the comments section of the Daily Express to see just how much racism, xenophobia and hate there is, towards immigrants, remainers and anyone who dare question the notion that 17 million voted for hard brexit at any cost.

    There is precious little criticism of such views coming from those who say they voted to leave but claim it was not because of immigration.

  2. codejunky Silver badge

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    @AC

    Worryingly there are a number of good reasons to leave from economy and trade to democracy. Unfortunately I have found discussing the EU upsets those who believe that only the EU can provide those things and the only reason to leave is racism, xenophobia, etc. There are of course the XFactor crowd (on both sides) who support their view because they could never agree with *insert name (e.g. Cameron, Farage, Obama, Osborne, Gove) or insulting the other sides lies (here is a shock, both official campaigns lied) but the whole thing has devolved into democratic voters and anti-democratic voters regardless of which way someone cast their vote.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    whatever you think, and whatever the facts might be, the leave vote rode on the fear of the foreigners overtaking our precious way of life, taking our jobs, taking our children's place at school and at the GP. Never mind "they" (v. "us") pay taxes to gain access to those services and that they do the jobs we can't be f... to take.

    p.s. I find it hilarious that Theresa, in the background (telly's on) in one breath talks about controlling immigration and playing broader role in globalisation.

    If you think you can build barriers and, at the same time, be a leader in globalization (as Theresa's just declared), oh boy, this signals to me a rather severe contradiction. I see absolutely NO prospects of Britain to re-invent herself (as what?!) and become competent and successful at floating in the vast, worldwide waters without the EU chain around the neck. The only chance would be, I think, if the EU were to go down. Then, definitely, jumping the ship in your own time gives you a higher chance of survival (although it doesn't mean survival is certain).

    all that said, I'm NOT waiting eagerly to say: I told you. I hope it never comes to that. I just don't see any (post-EU) vision that can take Britain forward. In fact, Never mind I don't see a vision. I don't see any vision from our Glorious Leader, who's supposed to lead this country.

    oh, "... change the basis of the British economic model", says Theresa in the background. But for f... 's sake, change to WHAT?! You have no f... plan! Worldwide casino?! :(

  4. astrax

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    @AC

    The truth be told it's an easier argument for you to simply stereotype leave voters as stupid/racist/xenophobic. Truth be told, even if the reason behind someone voting leave was immigration, that does not necessarily mean they are racist. It's an appalling situation where people cannot openly discuss topics such as immigration without being labelled a neo-nazi. You're quite happy to advocate positive discrimination concerning EU nationals, so what about every other nationality in the world?

  5. fruitoftheloon
    Happy

    @AC: Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    Dear AC,

    may I point out that:

    - you may have tried a bit harder

    - you haven't met me

    Also WTF are you trying to glean information and [presumably] draw valid conclusions from reading the comments section of the Daily Express FFS?

    I don't have to spend my time rebutting the [I presume as I haven't read it] nonsense espoused by such folk to justify to you or ANYONE ELSE why I voted to Leave - which btw has zilch to do with immigration.

    It's called democracy matey, those folk are as entitled to their views as you and I are to ours.

    Chill dude, the world will continue to rotate!

    So how many downvotes will I get from folk that can't be arsed to courteously reply to my post?

    Cheers [I am actually in the pub at the mo!]

    Jay

  6. dbayly

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    <quote> What we need is a big WALL to make everybody respect us, and fear us, and make us GREAT agin!

    </quote>

    You forgot to add... "and make Europe pay for it!".

  7. smartypants

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    "Worryingly there are a number of good reasons to leave from economy and trade to democracy."

    Ignoring trade and the economy (which businesses have already given their damning verdict on), Let's take democracy.

    What is happening now is probably the biggest abuse of democracy I have seen in this country in my adult life. We have a party which won an election on a platform of remaining in the EU, and holding a NON BINDING referendum. Then we had a referendum debate, where the remain camp argued to remain (obviously), and the leave camp - from Farage to Johnson and Gove - argued we were better off with a 'Norwegian' style model. Then a new prime minister appeared, and decided that parliament shouldn't have anything to do with brexit. She would sort it. With royal prerogative FFS. And what has she decided to do? Something that wasn't even put as an option in front of any of us at any time.

    This is *all* our doing. British 'democracy'. Your point was?

  8. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    @astrax

    The problem is that it's T Mayhem and her friends that are labelling 17 million leavers as racist xenophobes - and agreeing with them.

    The ballot paper didn't mention anything about bloody foreigners or any other reason. It just said In the club or out.Nothing about what sort of out. But Mayhem has decided that the only thing that matters is to keep the bloody foreigners out, whatever the short and long-term cost to the country, and regardless of what people actually think. Once the deportations start there'll be millions whingeing about "Oh no, not that nice Ladislaus from down the road. He did a great job on the roof and his daughter is friends with my son"

    It was a completely ill-advised and ill-thought out referendum. A sensible solution would be to blame Cameron and friends for the whole mess, string him up on Tower Bridge, set the referendum aside, and have a new process which offers a range of workable and thoroughly costed options to choose from..

  9. smartypants

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    "Truth be told, even if the reason behind someone voting leave was immigration, that does not necessarily mean they are racist."

    True. Poles are white, so you dodge that bullet.

    But most immigration has nothing to do with the EU. If our country was so worried about immigration, why did non of the parties - tories included - even with May in the home office - do nothing about the source of immigration that the UK had full control over without screwing up its relationship with its partners in the rest of Europe?

    The reason is that immigration wasn't a problem. It was good for us. 200,000 people picking our crops, 300,000 of them healing our sick... And so on. Jobs that couldn't be filled, and presumably won't be filled in the future once we have 'got our country back'.

    It is hard for many people to have a sensible view on immigration given the popular press's demonisation of migrants. I feel sorry for those sucking at the poisonous teat of the Sun, Express and Daily Mail.

  10. Dan 55 Silver badge

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    "A little over six months ago, the British people voted for change. [...] And it is the job of this Government to deliver it. That means more than negotiating our new relationship with the EU. It means taking the opportunity of this great moment of national change to step back and ask ourselves what kind of country we want to be."

    Did anybody vote for that? I don't remember "[X] Give a blank cheque to the Conservative Party" on the ballot paper.

  11. MonkeyCee Silver badge

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    My issue with the Leave voters is very little to do with what each of them individually decided on as their reason(s) for voting that way, but that that many of their views where mutually contradictory.

    Most will repeat things that are demonstrably false. When these falsehoods are explained, they are dismissed as the conclusion is clearly "correct" and doesn't need no steenkin' evidence. The persistence of BJ's assorted euro myths managing to show the EU as being some evil empire, rather than the UK being somewhat incompetent (eg prawn cocktail flavorings)

    " It's incredibly bigoted, almost fascist perspective that only serves to divide our society "

    Perhaps you missed the lessons on what fascism is. It's about might = right, that force is the only true measure. You'll notice that it was a right wing, Britain first, Leave voting chap who decided to gun down a democratically elected representative because he disagreed with her.

    If you're voting for the same cause as the actual fascists, then I'd take a good hard look at yourself.

    PS Remainers are about as racist as the Leavers, just in an "exploit them" rather than "shoot 'em all" kind of way

  12. Yugguy

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    You need to get out more then.

    I voted for control, not for closure.

    I have no desire, or need, to send anyone "home".

  13. codejunky Silver badge

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    @ smartypants

    "We have a party which won an election on a platform of remaining in the EU, and holding a NON BINDING referendum."

    We do? Is this anything like the cast iron guarantee Cameron won on the previous election or the elections won by Labour on the promise of a referendum? And the leader of the party was elected on acting on the referendum result and that was the undeniable basis on which it was put forward and held. This is after being taken into the EU against the will of the people (there was little support for it which is why we didnt bother with a vote, Blair knows best).

    As for various models, great. Except the EU has made their position non-negotiable. We are in completely or we are out, and the vote was certainly not for in.

    The new PM is due to Cameron promising to stay regardless of the result, then going. Cameron advertised the vote as definitive and will be acted upon (full stop, the end, no small print) and so the gov is doing that.

    However my point about the reason to vote remain/leave and democracy was to do with the UK democracy vs EU democracy as an influencing reason other than immigration.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: @AC: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    I need to point out to you that you - and I, and the rest of the crowd here, are a tiny minority. A (large) MAJORITY feeds off gutter press and they push the most obvious buttons, that is the fear of a stranger. Why? Because it sells, and it sells, because this is what - again, most people - naturally feel towards strangers, if not fear, suspicion, and then, with fud, it's best to keep strangers - at bay. Just in case, you know. The Brits are no exception, by the way. Although it doesn't make me feel better to think that it works the same way everywhere you look in the world.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    You forgot to add... "and make Europe pay for it!".

    and throw away the key.

  16. Terry 6 Silver badge

    Re: @AC: Employers have called for a "sensible" immigration programme

    Thing is that it was a small majority of those who turned out who voted to change the status quo, Leaving things as they are is not an easy thing to motivate voters to do. And so the ones who did vote to leave were the ones who were motivated to make this change. Which leaves the question as to where that motivation came from. Maybe it was

    1.) a significant number who took a balanced and thoughtful view that the UK would be better off economically, all things considered. Or

    2.) a significant number who don't like foreigners/ believe that we pay vast amounts to the EU for nothing (that we could spend on the NHS) / think we are subject to strange,imposed, foreign "human rights" laws that we don't want.

    Well, we can all take a view on which we think most likely. I hope it really is a full Brexit. Let them have what they deserve.

  17. AMBxx Silver badge
    FAIL

    CBI funding

    CBI is desperate to keep some of its EU funding.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: CBI funding

    Of course all EU funding in the UK is actually UK funding that the UK government didn't choose to fund.

  19. Scott Broukell
    Facepalm

    Firstly, I just find it completely astonishing that a voluntary, mutually beneficial, swift and painless exit from the European project, by any given nation(s), appears NEVER to have been accorded serious consideration and, as such, formed a fundamental part of the agreement to which member nations signed up !

    I mean, a nation like Greece can have it's books 'cooked' by a major financial institution and gets in with a nod from all involved (especially the banks). But, no, no, no, you want leave UK, well, we're all going to kick up a stink and throw our toys around and make sure that nobody ends up happy!

    More to the point, it would seem that a growing number of people are now less than satisfied with the idea of open boarders throughout the European Project zone. Well I know that the idea seemed appealing 50 years ago, but things have moved on since then and demanding to verifiably document travelers throughout the European area would seem beneficial now. Especially given the expansion of the European project area since it's beginnings. It's a measure designed to enhance, not obstruct, and, as such, should cause little or no bother to any legitimate job seekers going in either direction. Now, if only we could all be sensible and mature about it, that might help.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Facepalm indeed

    1. Seeing as the UK is a member of the club, maybe they should have put some work in to devise the mechanism for a swift and painless exit.

    2. As far as I'm aware, nobody in Europe is kicking up a stink, it's all bluster in the UK (by both sides of the debate).

    3. The risible border control argument. Why not take it to its logical conclusion and impose controls when travelling between, say, Cheltenham and Gloucester. See how much more productive your time will be if you have to make that journey on a daily basis.

  21. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

    Re: Facepalm indeed

    "Seeing as the UK is a member of the club, maybe they should have put some work in to devise the mechanism for a swift and painless exit."

    *cough* If it wasn't for the UK, article 50 wouldn't exist. *cough*

  22. Dr_N Silver badge

    Re: Facepalm indeed

    "The risible border control argument. Why not take it to its logical conclusion and impose controls when travelling between, say, Cheltenham and Gloucester."

    If ever there was a need for hard border controls ....

  23. Vinyl-Junkie
    Headmaster

    Re: Facepalm indeed

    I think you misunderstand; the AC doesn't want border controls, they want an end to open "boarders"; so no more bed & breakfast for you, Johnny Foreigner!

  24. Scott Broukell

    Re: Facepalm indeed

    @ Brewster's Angle Grinder - Except of course that what I was pointing out is the distinct lack of a 'Pre-Nup' arrangement as it were, (who gets the Jazz CDs and who gets the cat etc etc.), whereas said 'Article 50' is merely a starting point for discussion about separating. My gripe is that a fundamental part of the Union's mission statement should include a statement to the affect that each party shall separate on good terms and with neither one being seen to gain over the other. Whereas what we are heading for is seemingly not unlike trying to reach a mutually agreeable severance from a mobile phone operators contract - it's going to be a bumpy acrimonious ride that nobody is particularly proud of!

  25. MJI Silver badge

    Re: Facepalm indeed

    >>3. The risible border control argument. Why not take it to its logical conclusion and impose controls >>when travelling between, say, Cheltenham and Gloucester. See how much more productive your >>time will be if you have to make that journey on a daily basis.

    1) Try to catch them - too many routes, I'll do A38, then via Down Hatherly, Staverton, and in from that end.

    2) GVBP - try to stop someone "on a mission"

  26. s. pam
    Pint

    Oh my goodness, think of the Curry Houses

    My oh my, we might have to learn how to cook more!

  27. Vinyl-Junkie
    Unhappy

    Re: Oh my goodness, think of the Curry Houses

    As a result of Theresa Mayhem's time as Home Secretary the demise of the curry house is well in hand

    https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2017/jan/12/who-killed-the-british-curry-house

  28. BebopWeBop Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Re: Oh my goodness, think of the Curry Houses

    No, the demise of the poor quality curry house that survives (amongst competition from other 'world' cuisines) by relying on poor wages and immigrant workers in poor working conditions may well be threatened and rightly so.

    Read the article and I think you will see the author actually propose much of 'what', rather than 'who'

  29. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

    Re: Oh my goodness, think of the Curry Houses

    It's curious that we argue over controlling EU migration, but ignore non-EU migration. The government already have total control over non-EU immigration, but (bar the curry houses and the students) don't seem to have done anything about reducing it for years, particularly while T May was Home Secretary. Why is this? Surely nothing to do with drumming up support for her position by blaming all the country's problems on a bunch of 'foreigners'? That's been done before, many times and in many places. It was never justified.

  30. Version 1.0 Silver badge

    May's speach (in tweet form)

    Screw you all, I'm going to get reelected.

  31. Dr Stephen Jones
    Facepalm

    What do bosses want?

    Cheap labour. Same as what bosses have always wanted.

    Thank you, CBI. We were never in doubt whose side you were on.

  32. Toltec

    Re: What do bosses want?

    Staying in the EU means lots of cheap labour and yet somehow also protects workers rights?

  33. Tom 7 Silver badge

    Re: What do bosses want?

    And it will be a lot cheaper once we're out of the ECHR.

  34. tiggity Silver badge

    Re: What do bosses want?

    Repeat after me, EU and ECHR are different things

    ECHR membership is condition of EU membership but leaving EU does not automatically mean not subscribed to ECHR.

    Ironically, back in the day, various conservatives played key role in pushing for creation of, and laying ground rules of ECHR.

  35. EnviableOne Bronze badge

    Re: What do bosses want?

    The CBI are actually working for BIG business not small, so the migrant and cheap workers are not their bag.

    What they want are the Europeans in the Finance and tech industries to be able to work in the city / M4 corridor, to keep providing the services that UK firms export back to the EU.

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Saddening

    Norwegian here, studied in Holland and working in Germany..

    What the british appear to be doing continues to boggle my mind.

    While in the EU, you appears to have been having a nicely cherry-picked deal. (Yes I know.. weaker "new" members would get a better babk balance, but this is a part of pulling all of the union forward).

    This you want to throw away. For reasons of Immigration?

    Germany was carrying the burden of taking in people fleeing the mess that is middle eastern politics...

    The Poles had a tradition of helping you out with hard work going back to 1940...

    The French were keeping as many as possible back at Calais...

    Correct me if I am wrong, but much of your immigration appears to be the result (on both shorter and longer term) of British colonial empire building, while EU was working hard at limiting your problems..

    I work in a bleeding edge High Tech firm, and we now have to think thrice before getting involved with british firms. I hear this ecoed around in the industry.

    You live in a state where CCTVs and intrusions on private rights are expanding continuously, and only held (somewhat) at bay by European cooperation..

    And all this you do to yourself, and to us, with an arrogance that is very hard to take for an outsider.

    It saddens an anglophile who grew up with strong british influenses.

    Anon because of work..

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Saddening

    I think you will see the brexit was a cold shower for the rosy and - clearly - idealistic image held by many nations in Europe, that the Brits, while definitely quirky (well, you know, first the world empire and then - just a little, miserable island, can't blame them, eh) are, nevertheless, level-headed. They were seen by many as a EU's rudder, to straighten some of the wilder Eurocratish ideas, but generally a positive role, staying with the ship. The same thinking was applied when Europe was watching the brexit referendum. Brits are not stupid, they always know what's best for them, and it's pretty obvious you're better off in the club, even one with a few rules that you don't like rather than being out in the open, where the rest of the world is NOT your friend, but competitors, at best. That was the general perception of the Brits in Europe. Sure, the British have their weirdos like Farage and his 350 milion for NHS, and they have gutter press banging on about how the Czechs or Poles ate all their pond fish, and the "migrants" taking over "this great nation", etc., but hey, this is fringes, this is... color, crazies, every country has their share. But the Brits are steady and when they think about it and when it comes to voting, they will vote - reasonably.

    Bzzzz

    They're just like everybody else, wow! Throw a few simple slogans at them, and they'll take the bait, forget reasonable, welcome "emotional" and make the Britain Great again. Real debate... nope. Real figures? Lies, all lies spun by EUcrats.

    The Brits are just like every hypocrite - they belittle foreigners for everything foreign, but can't be f... to do those dirty, low paid jobs and don't mind at all profiting directly, as their employers, and indirectly, by paying lower prices in shops through those low paid job done by foreigners. They don't mind when the foreigners pay British taxes, but boil with indignation when they dare use the social services those taxes pay for. In short, they're just like every other nation in this world. Shock, horror, I tell you! So it is a true brexit, for both sides, I think.

    And now they can't even admit the facts: that in many industries whatever incentive there was to do business in Britain, the incentive, post-brexit is GONE, and A LOT of business has - quietly, very quietly but also very steadily - been moving out of and away from the UK, because, hey, this is, like the membership in the EU, the downside of being a part of an open world. Business leaks to stabler markets, safer, steadier profits. And if the Brits want to re-invent themselves, sure, go ahead, but it appears they still haven't got a f... clue as to what they want to become, post-EU - and how to get there. But hey, why worry with such petty details, they will figure SOMETHING out, right? (facepalm)

  38. I&I

    Brand damage

    Aside from any "truths" (and personal value-systems) is the world of perceptions. A chinese colleague tells me their compatriots reacted to our vote with "...up till then I had considered the british intelligent and stable".

    Brand damage then...

  39. Toltec

    Re: Saddening

    One of the problems is you only hear and read about the noisy minority, that May is now playing to the crowd for her own reasons does not help.

    Most leave voters I know are not anti-Europe or anti European, but do not want to be in the EU anymore, many feel that it is a wall isolating us from the rest of the world. That it has repeatedly failed to balance its books in a way that would see any company under investigation for fraud does not help. The EU has and continues to do good work, however it is also a bloated self serving bureaucracy with political and economic goals that we do not agree with and for some of us the balance has tipped.

    Immigration is fine, people that want to come to the UK to work and contribute, the majority, are welcome, the ones fleeing oppresion and war need our help, the ones that just want to take advantage or cause trouble, the minority, are not welcome.

  40. Lotaresco Silver badge

    Re: Saddening

    "That it has repeatedly failed to balance its books in a way that would see any company under investigation for fraud does not help."

    That's a lie told and re-told by UKIP. If you want to judge how much you can trust UKIP on this, check their record on corruption. They are, in terms of proportion of MEPs caught with their fingers in the petty cash box, the most corrupt party in the European Parliament.

  41. hoola

    Flexible Approach

    It all depends on where you come from......

    Highly skilled doctors, engineers etc. that we do not have enough of and in the latter case are incapable of developing due to the long-standing mantra that skill magically appear and are not worth developing because it costs money (= less short term profit for bosses) are not the crux of the problem.

    Low skilled workers that come in, push wages down and then make not particularly attractive jobs even less attractive whilst boosting short term profit for bosses is exactly where the problem lies. The numbers alone in the millions are why we are where we are. It is no just the UK, Holland now has similar concerns where Eastern Europeans will quite happily work for less than the Dutch. And why is this, because the immigrants overheads are minimal. They take advantage of exploitative landlords that put 5 in a room because the squalor is accepted. The prize of course is that although the wages are very low they are a fortune compared to where they have come from. The money builds up, is sent back home and so the merry-go-round continues.

    Ultimately this is all about bosses making even more money.

  42. Adrian Tawse

    NHS

    I recently suffered a stroke and spent some weeks in Hospital. I can assure you that if all the foreign Hospital workers, from Senior nurses through to cleaners (I don't know about Doctors) were to up sticks and leave the NHS would survive for less than 6 hours. To threaten to deny them the right to stay is rather like threatening to splash your enemy's shirt with your own blood. Only a politician could be that stupid. But they are aren't they.

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: NHS

    Working in the NHS, we have had post open for ages, and can't get UK workers, so we have had to go overseas to recruit just so we don't have to pay extortionate agency fees.

  44. Adrian Tawse

    Poles

    I have recently moved from Lincolnshire, an area that voted to leave. There is a large Polish community there with the inevitable friction with the locals. This I am sure is what led to the leave vote. But we need these people. We have an ageing population. The baby boomer generation are now getting past retirement and into requiring more care from the NHS. We need an infusion of young blood in the form of fit, working, tax paying young men to re-balance the population. Quite apart from the fact that without these men willing to do the hard agricultural work that the locals are largely either unwilling or unable to do then the cabbages would not be planted, would rot in the fields and would have to be imported, most likely from Poland.

  45. Lotaresco Silver badge

    "Low skilled workers that come in, push wages down and then make not particularly attractive jobs even less attractive "

    Just remind me which part of the EU did the Chinese cockle pickers and agricultural workers being exploited by the gang bosses come from?

  46. Holtsmark

    I believe that a mayor problem with much of the western world economical problems stem from a big trade deficit with China (and to some degree with oil-producig middle east nations).

    EU is one way to gain sufficient power to negotiate with China on more equal terms. This being the "wall towards the rest of the world" mentioned by a previous poster. How dumping EU in order to negotiate with the rest of the world, including China, alone is supposed to improve on this situation is an open question. to me.

    As an outsider, I also have trouble with understanding what was so "extra bad" about UKs position in the EU. Many of the issues brought up (lack of democratic control etc), seem to be the result of decades of the UK dragging their heels, and much of the blame for the economic situation since 2008 must be put in the lap of the UK, which together with the US pushed through a de-regulation which led straight to the collapse, and to the EU (and especially Germany) having to support weaker nations like Greece with quite extraordinary sums of money.

    The UK is squandering quite a lot of international goodwill with their posturing and behaviour, and a sentiment of "good riddance" can quite easily be generated this way. There appears to be much less worry about the future of the EU, than there is about the future of the UK.

  47. codejunky Silver badge

    @ Holtsmark

    "EU is one way to gain sufficient power to negotiate with China on more equal terms. "

    Iceland abandoned the EU joining effort and got a trade agreement with China. The EU with the core 'competency' of trade negotiation has yet to achieve it. In leaving the EU it is possible the UK could have such a trade deal before the EU.

    "which together with the US pushed through a de-regulation which led straight to the collapse, and to the EU (and especially Germany) having to support weaker nations like Greece with quite extraordinary sums of money"

    The US and UK are growing and recovered pretty quickly. The UK as one of the fastest growing in Europe. The EU, dead in the water. As a collective it is desperate to avoid deflation and the great news headlines are of an improving employment rate which would be difficult to be worse. It was the EU's actions and the Euro which killed Greece.

    "The UK is squandering quite a lot of international goodwill with their posturing and behaviour"

    Yes yes yes and yes. This is irritating me to no end. The leaders of this country have insulted the US president and with the jellyfish Cameron we were weak and feeble with the EU and the current crowd are undermined by themselves and the media at every turn. I just hope they get on with it and our gov concentrate on moving on. I can hope.

    "There appears to be much less worry about the future of the EU, than there is about the future of the UK."

    That seems to depend on the day. With all the troubles throughout the EU this does seem to be a good distraction for the EU to move the focus off their failings. I expect as the EU falls apart they blame brexit too but it is nice to hear them finally realising the EU project is on very shaky ground. Any problems in the UK will be our own doing and depends on our policies once we leave.

  48. Holtsmark

    Re: @ Holtsmark

    "Iceland abandoned the EU joining effort and got a trade agreement with China. The EU with the core 'competency' of trade negotiation has yet to achieve it. In leaving the EU it is possible the UK could have such a trade deal before the EU."

    Comparing the detailed needs of a trade deal for Iceland with the needs for a trade deal for UK or EU, one will most likely find that the former is much more easy to define (much smaller and less distributed economy). Especially if one does not have the power backing to force consessions from the opponent.

    In the same way, that it now will be easy for the UK to get a fast trade deal with both the EU and China. Getting GOOD deals will most likely be another matter.

  49. codejunky Silver badge

    Re: @ Holtsmark

    @ Holtsmark

    "one will most likely find that the former is much more easy to define (much smaller and less distributed economy)"

    This is very true but also very much a problem. The EU is a cartel. The single market is a market to protect its members from the outside world. And where the EU is supposed to have sole competency at negotiating trade they allowed all members to have a say over the Canada deal and got scuppered by a tiny minority. So the nimble and well defined needs of the one vs the competing many needs of the many.

    "Especially if one does not have the power backing to force consessions from the opponent."

    This used to mean something in world trade when tariffs were large but that is the old world which the EU was built for. However world trade has moved on and we really do trade globally to the benefit of all who participate. This is why food prices are expected to fall when we leave the EU because we dont have to impose crippling tariffs against the rest of the world to protect a few members interests. If the trade negotiation is seen as zero sum then it is not a negotiation and we carry on as normal.

    "In the same way, that it now will be easy for the UK to get a fast trade deal with both the EU and China. Getting GOOD deals will most likely be another matter."

    A good deal is reducing import tariffs and we can do that without permission. Reduced export tariffs would be nice but not necessary. As the EU is realising with financial services, if they cut us off it is them who suffer the most damage.

  50. Holtsmark

    Re: @ Holtsmark

    "This used to mean something in world trade when tariffs were large but that is the old world which the EU was built for. However world trade has moved on and we really do trade globally to the benefit of all who participate."

    This is only the case if all players play by the rules.

    Regrettably, there is at least ine BIG world actor who prefer not to do so, and I am pretty sure that this has helped us into the situation where we are now.

    Have you tried to set up a business in China lately.

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