The Speaker
Wednesday, 29 May 2024 – 21:41

The EU and Trade: Cheque Mate?

Theresa May will not be shortcutting her Brexit Negotiations with the EU, despite prominent MP’s pushing for a harder Brexit.

May currently proposes the UK and European Union formalize a ‘Common Rulebook’, to which trade agreements can continue to function, without the delayed results a ‘no deal’ Brexit could bring, due to the lengthy process of customising a trade deal with every EU State. As one of the largest consumer States, the UK could be disproportionately affected if a ‘no deal’ Brexit was struck, of which Theresa May explains, is out the bounds of the ‘national interest’ and will ‘not be pushed’ into compromising on her Chequers agreement.

With some worried any ‘rulebook’ will leave the UK tied to EU rules, of which the referendum ultimately decided to depart from, May runs the risk of losing the confidence of her party members, as it could deny Britain the chance at more profitable trade deals in the future.

In contrast, any type of arrangement with the EU, will no doubt have unforeseen consequences. Trying to predict the shortfalls only portrays one side of the argument, hence why International Trade Secretary, Liam Fox, has denied Chancellor Philip Hammond’s warning that a “no-deal” Brexit could damage the economy, as a 15 projection of future trade deals is still only a prediction.

Mr Fox poses the question to Andrew Marr, “Can you think back in all your time in politics where the Treasury have made predictions that were correct 15 years out? I can’t…They didn’t predict the financial crisis. No-one could.”

All whilst Mrs May tries to close a final deal with the European Union, she faces being undermined by those who seek to overthrow her. Calling for a people’s vote could not only damage the UK’s negotiating position with the EU, it could also weaken the global market by decreasing the value of the pound, as well as confuse members of the public further, as the complexity of the Brexit negotiations develops each day and compromises must be struck. May warns it would be a ‘gross betrayal of our democracy and.. trust’ to arrange a second referendum, explaining why the Government had previously ruled it out.

Could a people’s vote really change Brexit negotiations for the better?

May adds that ‘real progress’ has been seen since July, but led to two cabinet members resigning, including Boris Johnson, former Foreign Secretary, and previously dedicated MP’s calling the Chequers Agreement an ‘humiliation’ that would be ‘almost worse’ than remaining in the EU.

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