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-   -   The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in CH (https://www.englishforum.ch/international-affairs-politics/248156-brexit-referendum-thread-potential-consequences-gb-eu-brits-ch.html)

xynth 05.02.2016 14:30

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
I feel this whole debate is incredibly one sided. Why should only the British citizens get a vote whether to stay in the EU? I think it would be only fair if the rest of the EU countries get to vote on whether to allow the Brits into the EU under whatever terms are negotiated.

I say, let them leave if they want to. If they think that an isolationist policy with their major trade partner is even a remotely good idea, then the rest of the EU is better off without them.

But let's just put this into context. The British economy is in fact not in a good shape, growth is slowing, inflation is falling and Britain itself does not produce almost anything. ~75% of the economy is services. Much of that is concentrated in London.

Services are much more mobile than production. Production is tied to infrastructure, factories, supply chains. Services, not so much. There doesn't have to be a full blown Brexit either. A worsening geopolitical outlook is enough for big financial institutions to start looking at alternatives. Perhaps nothing will happen in the short term, but for an economy so concentrated in one place and so dependent on a very narrow set of finicky and mobile sectors, I'm surprised the Brits are as confidant as they are that they will be better off on the outside.

I won't even go into discussion about goodwill, of which there won't be much left among the people of Europe if the British rhetoric of "we want all the benefits but none of the responsibilities" continues. This entire affair just reeks of the Greek shenanigans where the political establishment found a convenient way to deflect blame by pointing at a distant yet relevant enemy.

There seems to be a general agreement here that a European super-state is the only long term solution. I agree. Europe will only survive if we can unite. The current implementation won't work, I agree on that point too. There needs to be a change. But disintegration is certainly not a step towards that long term solution. The only thing that comes from disintegration is distrust, small-minded nationalistic agendas and the perfect playing field for strong united powers like US or China to gobble up the most delicious bits. UK is no longer such a power. It cannot afford to play with the big boys. To quote master Elrond from the Lord of the Rings: "Either you'll unite, or you'll fall."

Guest 05.02.2016 14:31

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueangel (Post 2532456)
What about the hundreds of thousands of Brits currently working within the EU who will be forced to return to the UK?

What about the many Brits who've retired to countries within the EU who will also be forced to return?

My old college friend runs an ex pat site in Spain, and it would be devastating to thousands upon thousands of people there.


Would a Brexit really be that drastic? It sounds like it is tantamount to a declaration of economic war. I realize the EU issues a lot of veiled threats, but what truly are the repercussions of an exit?

I think this needs real truthful and honest extrapolation beyond fear mongering in order for voters to better decide. Seems to me Cameron's effort are better served in clarifying this area than trying to act like a celebrity endorser.

Guest 05.02.2016 14:35

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Just a question- as it is very much in the news in the UK- how many expats here claim child benefit for children still in the UK. Who pays it? And what is the difference for child-benefit in CH and in the UK, amount-wise?

Artax 05.02.2016 14:35

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by xynth (Post 2532474)
I feel this whole debate is incredibly one sided. Why should only the British citizens get a vote whether to stay in the EU? I think it would be only fair if the rest of the EU countries get to vote on whether to allow the Brits into the EU under whatever terms are negotiated.

Because as the second largest net contributor to the EU budget, most of the other countries would rather the UK stayed in. Also it sounds rather undemocratic; Only Scottish residents were able to vote in their referendum as it was determining the destiny of the place where they live. Which in your case, is a non-EU state. The USA and China are Japan's biggest trading partners. Does that mean they have to have a political union to get along? Chinese judges interfering in US legal cases? The US dictating Japan's asylum policies?

lewton 05.02.2016 14:40

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueangel (Post 2532456)
What about the hundreds of thousands of Brits currently working within the EU who will be forced to return to the UK?

What about the many Brits who've retired to countries within the EU who will also be forced to return?

My old college friend runs an ex pat site in Spain, and it would be devastating to thousands upon thousands of people there.

I don't think Spain would like to see them (and their GBP) go. :p

amogles 05.02.2016 14:46

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by lewton (Post 2532482)
I don't think Spain would like to see them (and their GBP) go. :p

Benidorm would be a rather lonely place. :)

http://www.zeit.de/reisen/2015-07/be...bec3f935b/wide

http://www.benidormallyearround.com/...ish_square.JPG

Blueangel 05.02.2016 14:51

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Phos (Post 2532476)
Would a Brexit really be that drastic?

Yes it would!

Having spent the last 10+ years working in Business Travel, I'm absolutely sure a lot of companies would take a massive hit if the UK does exit the EU. You're average man in the street has precious little idea of how huge the imapct would be, but I'm damned sure many large businesses will already be playing out the scenario. They were playing it out when the Grexit was a real possibility.

This is what is could really look like...

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk...-10207704.html

http://www.bbc.com/news/business-32820717

Quote:

Originally Posted by Phos (Post 2532476)
I think this needs real truthful and honest extrapolation beyond fear mongering in order for voters to better decide. Seems to me Cameron's effort are better served in clarifying this area than trying to act like a celebrity endorser.

Well there's not a hope in hell of that happening when the UK is blighted with scum like UKIP and EDL.

Blueangel 05.02.2016 14:59

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by lewton (Post 2532482)
I don't think Spain would like to see them (and their GBP) go. :p

I've only just noticed that you give your nationality as Greek.

What do you think of a possible Brexit?

I don't believe it will happen, but wonder what the impact would be on Portugal, Ireland, Spain and Greece. Would a Brexit destabilise them?

Guest 05.02.2016 15:05

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Seems there are four or more distinct regions of Europe that have quite different perspectives and economic realities:
-UK & Scandanivia
-Central Europe
-Mediterranean countries
-Eastern Europe
-Misc.?

Is everyone really all the same?


Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueangel (Post 2532498)
Yes it would!
.....
Well there's not a hope in hell of that happening when the UK is blighted with scum like UKIP and EDL.

The ask for everyone to simply forget who they are and where they came from sounds like a tall order. It seems to make sense for people who have a cosmopolitan perspective, educated, and have travelled a bit. But I think there are still quite a large number of Europeans who have never travelled too far from where they were born. Should they just be ignored and relegated to some kind of, I dunno, under-developed class of Europeans? Is that kind of EU acceptable to you? Under the EU, who looks after the interests of these people?

Phil_MCR 05.02.2016 15:11

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by xynth (Post 2532474)
I feel this whole debate is incredibly one sided. Why should only the British citizens get a vote whether to stay in the EU? I think it would be only fair if the rest of the EU countries get to vote on whether to allow the Brits into the EU under whatever terms are negotiated.

I say, let them leave if they want to. If they think that an isolationist policy with their major trade partner is even a remotely good idea, then the rest of the EU is better off without them.

But let's just put this into context. The British economy is in fact not in a good shape, growth is slowing, inflation is falling and Britain itself does not produce almost anything. ~75% of the economy is services. Much of that is concentrated in London.

Services are much more mobile than production. Production is tied to infrastructure, factories, supply chains. Services, not so much. There doesn't have to be a full blown Brexit either. A worsening geopolitical outlook is enough for big financial institutions to start looking at alternatives. Perhaps nothing will happen in the short term, but for an economy so concentrated in one place and so dependent on a very narrow set of finicky and mobile sectors, I'm surprised the Brits are as confidant as they are that they will be better off on the outside.

I won't even go into discussion about goodwill, of which there won't be much left among the people of Europe if the British rhetoric of "we want all the benefits but none of the responsibilities" continues. This entire affair just reeks of the Greek shenanigans where the political establishment found a convenient way to deflect blame by pointing at a distant yet relevant enemy.

There seems to be a general agreement here that a European super-state is the only long term solution. I agree. Europe will only survive if we can unite. The current implementation won't work, I agree on that point too. There needs to be a change. But disintegration is certainly not a step towards that long term solution. The only thing that comes from disintegration is distrust, small-minded nationalistic agendas and the perfect playing field for strong united powers like US or China to gobble up the most delicious bits. UK is no longer such a power. It cannot afford to play with the big boys. To quote master Elrond from the Lord of the Rings: "Either you'll unite, or you'll fall."

One benefit of UK leaving is that they would be free to negotiate and sign a free trade deal with the US and China.

I think there are 2 main problems with the EU:

1. QMV. If all decisions were based on unanimity, then there would be fewer disagreements.
2. The second is the unwelcome encroaching of the EU into aspects that were not intended. e.g. taxation was to be the preserve of the sovereign state, but you had encroachment based on arguments of free movement of capital and now on state aid principles

lewton 05.02.2016 15:16

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueangel (Post 2532504)
I've only just noticed that you give your nationality as Greek.

What do you think of a possible Brexit?

I don't believe it will happen, but wonder what the impact would be on Portugal, Ireland, Spain and Greece. Would a Brexit destabilise them?

I already wrote my opinion: if the UK goes this may be good for the rest of us because it may wake up the Brussels establishment.

Greece cannot get any more destabilized anyway. I have already stated my opinion on Greece, and that is that the country will never recover and get back on its knees while sharing this euro with Germany. Nothing to do with Britain.

lewton 05.02.2016 15:18

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
A question to the Brits wanting to leave the EU. Where do you see the UK afterwards?
1. A member of the EEA?
2. Trying to strike bilateral agreements with the EU as a whole?
3. Ignoring the EU and trying to collaborate as much as possible with each European country individually?
4. Else?

Blueangel 05.02.2016 15:33

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Phos (Post 2532514)
The ask for everyone to simply forget who they are and where they came from sounds like a tall order. It seems to make sense for people who have a cosmopolitan perspective, educated, and have travelled a bit. But I think there are still quite a large number of Europeans who have never travelled too far from where they were born.

I don't know any Brits who haven't travelled, most of them, quite extensively, but that's largely because of my background and the business I worked in.

I did work in an office where languages were a necessity for certain teams, and in the travel, tourism and hospitality industry alone, the UK would lose approx 40% of it's work force. Until British schools can provide job applicants with a business level knowledge of several languages, we need to recruit from the EU, and being part of the EU makes this process much easier.

Guest 05.02.2016 15:37

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Honest question, is the UK's membership agreement special and only for the UK?

Was there a missed opportunity here? They could have used the opportunity to redefine what the ideal relationship is between a country and the EU, and then worked on trying to apply that as a model for all members.

If the UK gets an emergency brake, seems everyone should also have emergency brakes of their own. Why debilitate a country's ability to deal with its problems for the sake of being in the EU? Isn't that oppressive and counter-productive?

MsWorWoo 05.02.2016 15:39

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Phil_MCR (Post 2532444)
That's just a political manoeuvre. It is quite possible to create an Erasmus-like structure which doesn't require commitments beyond those necessary to achieve its aims.

You don't think that the EU would use petty politics on the UK? We really are not that important and powerful you know. We lost the empire over half a century ago... We certainly are not as economically important as CH so I have no idea why anybody thinks we will be treated any better than CH.
This all kind of reminds me of Salmond's half-baked ideas on how an independent Scotland would work, still having all the currency, trade, and rights of the UK because that's what would be best for Scotland. Well, guess what, the UK and the EU both said no, you would have to start from scratch, why do you think the EU would treat the UK any better than the UK treated Scotland.
If we go, we are out, of everything, because politicians ARE petty, and because we are NOT a powerhouse anymore.

MsWorWoo 05.02.2016 15:42

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Artax (Post 2532466)
Why aren't these companies already there if its so great? Wouldn't it be better to have those distribution centres on the continent already? I also don't believe that businesses are buying up office space in the Netherlands as some sort of insurance policy. Way too expensive and early to see what will happen following a leave vote. The most likely outcome following leave is a reversion to EEA/EFTA, which keeps all the good stuff and gets rid of the odious undemocratic aspects:

Answer, Our very flexible tax regulations.
And just because the Brexit lot want to EEA/EFTA doesn't mean the rest of Europe will agree.

Guest 05.02.2016 15:47

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
The brinkmanship begins

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...ersed-MEPs.htm

1st poll is out too, 9 point lead for the leavers, 1 in 5 not sure.

FunnyBone 05.02.2016 15:52

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
But what about the pressure from the US?

http://www.theguardian.com/politics/...f-it-leaves-eu

amogles 05.02.2016 15:56

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Phos (Post 2532544)
Honest question, is the UK's membership agreement special and only for the UK?

Was there a missed opportunity here? They could have used the opportunity to redefine what the ideal relationship is between a country and the EU, and then worked on trying to apply that as a model for all members.

If the UK gets an emergency brake, seems everyone should also have emergency brakes of their own. Why debilitate a country's ability to deal with its problems for the sake of being in the EU? Isn't that oppressive and counter-productive?

I'm sure that a fair number of EU countries would love to renegotiate the terms of their membership. I expect they are waiting with baited breath and will try and ride on Britain's coattails if Britain can get significant concessions.

This scares the Eurocrats.

Artax 05.02.2016 15:59

Re: The Brexit referendum thread: potential consequences for GB, EU and the Brits in
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueangel (Post 2532498)
Well there's not a hope in hell of that happening when the UK is blighted with scum like UKIP and EDL.

Please don't smear people who have been campaigning / are in favour of brexit with the same brush as populists. There are many people who have been working on the political and legal problems surrounding the UK's membership of the EU for decades, and it is not simply a right-wing or populist area of political activism.

Quote:

Originally Posted by MsWorWoo (Post 2532547)
Answer, Our very flexible tax regulations.
And just because the Brexit lot want to EEA/EFTA doesn't mean the rest of Europe will agree.

From 'Flexcit':

EFTA membership for the UK would have its own advantages, allowing it to tap into extensive consultation arrangements with the EU,without having to develop entirely new structures. If desired, it would also give it access to thefree trade areas to which the Association is party. Furthermore, the resultwould be a significant trading group, putting it fourth in the world league after China ($3,642bn) and ahead of Japan ($1,678bn).What might be termed,"EFTA-plus UK" would be a significant global player.


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