Authorization

Expect an EU-UK trade row in 2018, ex-ambassador warns MPs

A trade row will break out in 2018 about whether or not the UK will have the same trading arrangements with EU as Canada, the Treasury select committee has been told. 
Giving evidence to MPs on the process of Brexit negotiations, ex-ambassador to the EU Sir Ivan Rogers said that whatever progress might be made in December discussions, a row will break out about the nature of the UK's future trade deal with the remaining member states. 
"I think we’ll have a row straight away in 2018 on the scope and ambit of a free trade agreement," the former diplomat said. 
Comparing the rhetoric on both sides, Sir Ivan said that the jargon being used to describe the UK's Brexit trade deal by the EU was "Canada, or Canada dry", which contrasted starkly with UK's language of "Canada plus, plus, plus".
While Sir Ivan believed that there would be "appetite on both sides" for an effective deal, the UK would find a Canada-style arrangement to be "grossly inadequate".
He also noted that it was the first trade deal in history where the partners involved were trying to get further apart, in terms of economic arrangements, rather than a traditional, convergent deal. 
Expect an EU-UK trade row in 2018, ex-ambassador warns MPs

Britain's former ambassador to the European Union, Sir Ivan Rogers

Credit:
FRANCOIS LENOIR 
Failing to approach talks effectively could result in a negotiation where the UK finds itself offered a deal which supports the trade in goods with the EU, but fails to meet the needs of trade in UK services, he warned.
Claiming to have undertaken a comprehensive study, Sir Ivan said that those people discussing no deal scenarios have, so far, failed to actually examine that eventuality.
"Everybody talking about no deal doesn’t mean no deal. They mean when we get to the wire there would be lots of mini deals," he said.
Discussions about expanding customs processing capacity in the UK in a supposed no-deal situation have been fundamentally flawed, Sir Ivan explained. People had planned down to the level of car parking spaces in Kent, but had not considered the willingness and preparation for increased customs procedures in countries such as Belgium and France.
Pointing to aviation as one of the most problematic areas should there be a poorly planned exit from the EU, he said that he believed failing to arrive at an agreement could lead to a "bloody breakdown in trust". Such a situation would result in both sides having to plan for the eventuality of ruling out the other as a trade partner entirely.
Experts in European law, Professor Catherine Barnard and Professor Sir Alan Dashwood QC, joined Sir Ivan in giving evidence and all raised serious concerns about the future nature of the Irish and UK border.
"It is a very difficult issue," said Sir Alan.
"At first sight it looks like there are only two possible solutions; for the UK to have an arrangement that is tantamount to remaining in the single market and the customs union. The other is technological, and the Irish authorities are far from convinced it is going to be possible," he added.
See also:
Leave a comment
News
  • Latest
  • Read
  • Commented
Calendar Content
«    Ноябрь 2017    »
ПнВтСрЧтПтСбВс
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
27282930