Britain can't find rich friends
Remember all those exciting new trade deals we were promised in exchange for leaving the European Union, one of the richest trading areas in the world? Well, here they come… in the form of a few metric-tons of beef from New Zealand and, err, whatever it is that Australia exports apart from PE teachers with a quick temper.
The best part, however, is that these deals won’t even contribute to the UK’s already crippled economy. It’s been found that the proposed agreements could shrink GDP even further after tariffs (8% for kiwifruit and 16% for manuka honey) are reduced.
But Prime Minister Boris Johnson is keen to be seen reaching out to former colonial partners now that Britain has left the EU. Although, this time around most countries won’t be selling themselves out for a handful of beads and empty promises again.
The British government wants to strike as many trade deals as possible in order to make up for the potential shortfall if they fail to secure an agreement with the EU. This would open the way for joining the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).
The group currently consists of members Canada, Australia, Brunei, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam and now the UK… a country located in the North Sea.
But it will be difficult to recover from the some 7.6% of GDP lost if an accord with the EU is not reached. The much-touted deal with the US will only raise domestic product by 0.16% and, if the media are to be believed, a horde of cancerous chlorinated chicken.
But even this deal is unlikely to be finished any time soon with one representative calling the prospect ‘unlikely’. So, in the meantime the priority is ensuring trade with the EU, which a leaked document recently showed, will likely be vetoed by the EU parliament.
In any case, unless the UK manages to do some serious social climbing in the international community it will struggle to find any friends as rich as the EU. Who knows, in a few years Polish and Romanian politicians could be pointing at daunting posters of pasty British migrants coming over to pick onions.