25 October 2020
Britain will have worse trading terms with the EU than Australia without a deal, claims a report, writes David Maddox.
The Centre for Brexit Policy (CBP) blames the pitfalls in the Withdrawal Agreement.
And it questions Boris Johnson’s claim that the UK will simply switch to “Australia rules” on WorldTrade Organisation terms if a deal is not struck.
The CBP also says that unless there is a big change of tack, the Government risks breaking promises it made in the 2019 Conservative election manifesto to “take back control” of the nation’s laws, borders and money.
The report – The Australia Deal: Another Impossible Dream – describes the impact of the Withdrawal Agreement (WA) and associated Northern Ireland Protocol (NIP) which were signed into law a year ago.
Legally binding, they tie the UK so closely to the EU that it will not be able to match even the bare-bones trading agreement that Australia has with the EU, the authors claim.
It comes after talks reopened between Britain’s Lord Frost and Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief negotiator, in a last-ditch effort to come to an agreement.
The report, backed by senior Brexiteers, is adding to the pressure to repeal the Withdrawal Agreement if the EU refuses to come to reasonable terms. However, a senior minister has said that repealing the agreement is “more trouble than it is worth”, saying: “It is an international agreement, so we are entitled to interpret it in the context of our constitutional arrangements – so it is not that problematic.”
John Longworth, CBP Director General, declared: “Only by scrapping the WA/NIP and driving a new hard bargain with Europe can Boris deliver on his key promises: taking back control and getting a real Brexit done.”
Click here to read the article in full.
Click here to read the report in full.