brexit_post_10Do you like your Brexit hard or soft? That’s the question du jour in Britain at the moment, as the country struggles to come to terms with just what Brexit actually means.

We had a comment from James, arguing that Britain needs to keep access to the Single Market at all costs (including allowing freedom of movement with the EU to continue). In other words, he thinks hard Brexit would be a terrible mistake for Britain.

At Friends of Europe’s recent ‘State of Europe’ roundtable event in Brussels, we caught up with Fiona Hyslop, Scotland’s Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs, and asked her to respond to James. What does ‘hard Brexit’ mean, and would it really be so bad?

But would life outside the Single Market really be so bad? There were plenty of expert predictions of economic catastrophe in the event of a Leave vote (including from the IMF and the Bank of England), but the reality has been more mixed. On the one hand, the pound has slumped to a three-decade low against the dollar; on the other hand, the FTSE 100 has been hitting record highs. So, can we really trust the experts?

[…] Well, of course, Brexit hasn’t happened. There has been a vote for Brexit, but we have only seen the start of the process, and clearly the ramifications will come when there is an exit from the European Union. In the meantime, the devaluation of the pound has given perhaps an artificial boost to exports, which has been beneficial for some, perhaps also for tourism – but the long-term implications of this are very, very serious indeed.

Only this week, a leaked UK government report shows a 66 billion pounds loss in public sector income from Brexit. So, remember, the sky hasn’t fallen in because Brexit hasn’t happened yet…

The report that Fiona Hyslop cites is controversial. It represents the worst-case scenario if there is a total break with Europe, without any deal struck to retain even partial access to the Single Market. So, to get another perspective we also spoke to Jon Worth, a blogger and European Young Leader 2012. Did he think we could still trust the ‘experts’ on Brexit?

Can Britain survive outside the Single Market? Can we trust ‘expert’ predictions of doom and gloom if the UK opts for a hard Brexit? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below, and we’ll take them to policymakers and experts for their reactions!

IMAGE CREDITS: CC / Flickr – Michael Coghlan

450 comments Post a commentcomment

What do YOU think?

  1. Karlo Definis

    No, Britain will literally DIE. Hospitals will close and roads will crumble. People won’t be able to tell left from right. It will be pandemonium! Phrase better questions.

    • Edward Harkins

      Silly question but equally silly response. ‘Britain will not ‘literally’ die [upper or lower case]. Had the question been ‘will the U.K. survive’ that would be a critical poser. From our standpoint here in Scotland, there seems to be an increasing possibility of another referendum of Scottish independence (indyref2) in the wake of Brexit. In he UK-wide Brexit referendum Scotland voted near-unanimously to stay in the EU . Westminster’s offhand and dismissive attitude towards that reality is further increasing the possibility of a second Scottish referendum… that may mean the end of the U.K.

    • Paul X

      Edward, I think you will find that Indy2 will get rejected more emphatically than the first referendum. The more Sturgeon goes on about it the more people are seeing her as an obsessive with just one aim at any cost, she puts up the pretense that the referendum is to “protect Scotland’s interests” but the fact is that an independent Scotland will not automatically be in the EU, certain countries will definitely veto it and even if it is allowed to join the terms will not be attractive

  2. Zisis Poimenidis

    In my opinion, yes. Brits have their own currency and a huge and versalite primiry sector. Any potential and temporary currency devaluation will only boost their exports and industry, without affecting imports so much. I am no expert tho.

    • Susanna Vega

      and I guess having USA behind will be useful :P

    • Jesse-James Peters

      Imports are already increasing in price and Britain does not have a huge export economy. Not to mention that Britain’s currency has been told that it will lose world currency status if it drops below 3% global circulation.

    • Paul Sharpling

      Believe it or not, roughly 180 countries do manage to survive without being members of the EU, how dare they not bow and scrape to Jean-Claude, Angela, Jose and the other brainboxes who have done so much to solve the world’s problems, including poverty, unemployment, disease, war, nationalism, mass migration and a few others

    • EU citizen

      This is so funny! “Will Britain survive?”. I mean unless it is hit by a massive earthquake ending with a super volcano it most certainly will. Will the UK be as strong economy as it is now then may be “No” but this is only if we assume the government really takes the hard Brexit stance (which at this point I think is merely a bluff) and if the EU “survives” and thrives in its current form. If that happens then the EU is likely to punish the UK, we have all heard that this will hurt the EU economy but EU’s unity might be just slightly more important to the EU, not to mention the fact that many EU citizens would like to see the UK suffer (human nature) so if populism takes over then the EU would be very “mean” when negotiating with the UK. Finally the lower pound does indeed boost exports which means that the EU would like to introduce tariffs to protect itself from cheap British goods now that the British purchase power has dropped (in Euro terms) and people are more likely to buy domestic products hence less demand for EU goods in the UK as well there is no reason for the EU to insist on free trade. A main problem of both the Brexit and Remain camp is that they don’t show how different events are interrelated and they like simplifying concepts to things like “Cheaper pound boosts exports” or “FTSE100 is at record high” or “British families 4000 pounds worse off after Brexit”. To avoid such oversimplification and pure demagoguery complex decisions are to be made by government, they are paid to do just that!

  3. Matej Zaggy Zagorc

    Well, without that, increased racism (possible loss of work force in the future due to emigration) it will undoubtedly be a rocky road. Guess time will tell.

    • Matej Zaggy Zagorc

      So you’re saying there’s no difference between the two? 😉

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      @Matej Zaggy Zagorc
      Possible loss of EU-27 workforce c7% of global population v possible gain of RoW workforce c9% of global population.

      The UK has more in common with its multi-coloured and globally diverse Commonwealth than it does with some of the basketcase countries in the ‘Banana Federation’.

    • Martin Green

      There’s another difference we still have SPINES HERE

    • Jesse-James Peters

      Ivan Burrows half of all new investments have been stopped because of this nonsense. The pound can be devalued? And? Who is that helping exactly? We export mainly services which will have an easier time relocating. Our few manufacturers will have increased costs from importing raw materials. This helps no one.

    • Doreen Fenwick

      Stop being so pessimistic.This is coming not because anyt hing Brexit has done, its Banks, Big Business, Corporations plus remoaning polititions and their voters and of course the scaremongering Media and their spoilt brat Celebrities. And its all about them hahaha, THEY THINK. And protecting themselves and their money and possessions. They are just pathetic cowardly traitors and they dont represent their Countries or the people.With them its ME ME ME.And it will be their own downfall eventually.Because they can be replaced with up and coming new young men and women eventually.Then these jumped up traitors can be dumped like the trash they are, with The EU.xx.

    • Samantha Stretch

      Wow Doreen you’ve just shown what’s wrong with this country since brexit

    • Pauline Miller

      Yes, exactly Samantha, but don’t forget, we are the only EU country with spines. For God’s sake!!!

  4. Paul X

    The simple answer is Yes, Britain could survive

    The wider question is why should the UK be excluded because currently, if we want access, we are being blackmailed into accepting free movement of people but that free movement is based on a perpetual lie.

    The founding principle was for free movement for workers with a job or to take up an offer of a job and that meant you still have to have some form of border check to confirm if a person is a worker who meets that criteria.

    Subsequent to this the EU has watered this down (no doubt by hiding amendments in various treaties) and now claim anyone (good and bad) can just wander across borders unchecked, but the fact remains, every time you see some Europhile on the TV claiming free movement of people is a non negotiable fundamental principal of the EU they are lying through their teeth

    • Yasmine

      The presence of the word “could” in your answer sums up the situation…

      One of the basic goals of the EU is to bring up the living standard of people across its member-states without any discrimination as to their nationality. And if that involves Poles and Romanians working in the UK, the EU would encourage that. If the EU started backing off on such basic principles, it would not have a reason to exist. It is not lying at all. It is yourself who has been lied to that there is any possibility this could change. Nobody can prevent one EU citizen from visiting another EU state and as long as people are happy to pay their own way until they find work there is nothing to prevent them from looking for it. There also are no restrictions on the durations of (tourist) visits. Nobody asks you why you are entering/visiting. Two Eastern European states have already said they will block any EU-UK deal that doesn’t involve free movement of individuals and they will be acting within their rights if they do that. This is how a trading bloc works. People will only offer you what you want in return for what they want. The EU has no obligation to make concessions towards anyone.

    • Paul X

      I don’t disagree with what you say regarding the principles of free movement Yasmine, but I do not accept the claim that it is must be unquestionably linked to free trade. The rest of the world trades with each other without needing free movement, the “cannot have one without the other” is an invention of the EU to dilute national identities and the “fundamental principle” routinely quoted from Treaty of Rome is clearly being misrepresented (i.e we are being lied to)
      Essentially, if the EU feels the need it can easily make an exception to this rule and allow a country access to the free market without free movement, it all boils down to who has the strongest hand in the negotiations, which is something we will see next year

      P.S. For “could” in my earlier post please read “will” ty

    • Yasmine

      Paul, actually your optimistic posts on Brexit make me feel good. For just a few minutes I forget all the nightmarish details of the situation that the average member of the public ignores and still fails the perceive the deep whole that the UK is in.

    • Yasmine


    • Paul X

      Yasmine, I’ve yet to work out exactly what your motive is for continually preaching an end of the world scenario for the UK? Apart from your lack of respect for the “average member of (UK) public” who you clearly feel are intellectually inferior to yourself and your god given ability to predict the future for the UK , I fail to see what you are trying to prove?
      But anyway, it pays to look at the whole picture not just the ones that suit your (unknown) ambitions

    • EU citizen

      Paul X. I want to take a simplistic view on this. 27 countries will vote whether they agree to grant the UK access to the single market without paying 190 million/week and accepting free movement of people. Good or bad that is how democracy works 27 states have to agree and even if they do (which is so hard without any fundamental EU principals) to reach that agreement it will take some time. What this means is that if the UK wants to leave it will have to leave the single market at least for a little while which is likely to harm business. No one is saying countries don’t have free trade without free movement. Also I completely agree that one of the EU’s goals is to diminish national identity and quite frankly after the Nazis that was justified. The rise in hate crimes after the Brexit vote makes this goal even more understandable. That is not to say that national identity will or should disappear but may be it requires just slightly less focus. In a nutshell this is what works for Europe (although not perfect) and if the UK doesn’t like it is free to leave but not to change it which I thinks is fair.

    • Yasmine

      I’d be silly to go by feelings. It’s what I’ve seen here…Apparently, the average Brit can’t even work out the “ambitions” of an on-line debate…

    • Yasmine

      Paul, by the way, the main arguments in defence of Brexit do show lack of knowledge of specific facts which I happen to be aware of, as I know people who have been involved with the EU and have represented the UK at difference EU institutions and committees. So it is not a matter of lack of intellect but the average member of the public would not have access to this information and a lot of the things that were said to people prior to the vote were in contradiction of core facts. Equally, can you prove that the average person does know the core facts and voted with those in mind?

      Yourself for example are drawing conclusions about free movement of individuals in your post based on what you know generally about trade. But here we are talking about a specific Trading bloc that is free to make its own rules. It’s not about truth or lie. It is about how they want it. Do you understand the inadequacy of your own post?

    • Yasmine

      So here is a definition of national identity:

      This is an accusation against the EU (which is actually the sum of its members) that keeps coming up. Can someone please explain to me how the EU is trying to diminish national identity? Has it banned a specific language? A tradition or culture? Quite the opposite, it is the UK that has put a number of populations through forced assimilation: Welsh, Cornish etc. People were banned from speaking those languages. It seems a hypocritical accusation coming from the Brits.

    • Yasmine

      It seem to me that we are in a situation where national identity is being equated to nationalism. And, be default, let’s be honest, it is the less educated members of a society that would fall for this kind of argument. These are different techniques used by politicians in order to manipulate public opinion and get the result they want in elections:

    • Paul X

      well please enlighten me exactly whats your “discussions”are trying to achieve Yasmine? as far as I can see all you are doing is the cyber equivalent of walking up and down the high street with a sandwich board stating “the end is nigh”

    • Yasmine

      Paul, you also seem to think that you need to wait and see how the negotiations go next year…but you don’t need to! Because EU countries have already clarified their position:

    • Paul X

      @ EU Citizen, I accept your simplistic view, it will take unanimity from 27 countries to achieve any deal and that will be extremely difficult but it is something we have no influence over so there is no point trying to second guess what they will happen (unlike those with the god given gift of foresight)
      The main point of my earlier post is that the often quoted “no free trade without free movement” isn’t a law of physics, it is an EU invention and as such the EU has the power to deviate from it and considering how much the powerhouse of the EU (Germany) stands to lose if the UK retaliates to a poor trade arrangement then I’m certainly not going to try and predict what the eventual outcome is going to be

    • David

      Paul X. I don’t think there is anyone who thinks that Brexit is not going to harm the German economy. However, as the Brexit debate showed there is more to it then just the economy. The situation currently is so complex that Germany (as part of the EU) might have to consider risk mitigating strategies weighing in the damage from reduced trade with the UK against the existence of the EU and the Eurozone which is way more important than any deal withh the UK. Therefore, I don’t think it is going to be the economy argument that wins (similar to what happened here) but instead there will be calls for further integration which might find a lot resistence in the long run. Unfortunately, it will be protectionist EU against the UK. That’s why Theresa May is theinking of the EU migrants as bargainibg chips (she really doesn’t have many) but the EU might be willing to sacrifice even that. Also, let’s not forget that this is all happeblning amids a refugee crisis so the focus isn’t exactly Brexit and what Theresa May wants.

    • Paul X

      Yasmine, if you don’t think the EU is trying to dilute national identity then I don’t know what planet you are on. The EU is promoting itself with Flags and anthems, it wants everyone to consider themselves European before their home nationality. Juncker in his speech even dared to complain that national governments are putting their countries interest’s before those of the EU, what more proof do you need? ..and who said anything about banning? ban something would eradicate it where the word I’m using is dilute..and the last time I was in Wales there was plenty of Welsh being spoken and on all the signposts, please stop making things up about the UK when you clearly no nothing

    • Yasmine

      It is not about thoughts, Paul, In order to make any point on the debate you need to have facts. Which I have done. I have provided you with a definition of national identity and asked for specific ways in which the EU is trying to diminish it. I have also made a clear distinction between national identity and nationalism. However, instead of answering my question, you are talking about thoughts and impressions…It sounds to me like you have lost this one point as well…

      And I don’t need to justify any historic facts…Just open a history book and see how the English and Normans have treated the Native British populations. Apart from what you have seen in Wales, if you had spoken to any Welsh, they would have told you that they were slapped in the face at school if they spoke Welsh or Cornish. Cornish has no native speakers today and Welsh very few.

      If you cannot see the purpose of a debate, why are you here?

    • Paul X

      Yasmine to have a national Identity you need a Nation…and look….I can quote dictionaries as well…

      See the words “inhabiting a particular state or territory”… now explain to me how the EU’s dream of a borderless Europe does not erode Nation States?

    • Paul X

      ..oh by the way I actually lived in North Wales for two years, there were plenty of Welsh speakers and Welsh language was a compulsory subject at primary school, clearly your “facts” come from a different Wales?

      ..and referring to history and ow the Normans treated the population is hardly relevant to the current discussion….I mean in days gone by we used to burn witches at the stake… but luckily for you we gave that up as well…. ;-)

    • Yasmine

      Hi Paul, as you are still not answering my question regarding the EU’s suppression of national identity but trying to switch it around, I am afraid, I will not be dragged into this. I consider that I have made my point.

      Well, I don’t think that what happened in the Middles Ages is actually irrelevant in terms of the UK because you still have the same monarchy where this policy was coming from. However, the people that were slapped every time they spoke Welsh to the point that they even refused to speak it at home with their parents happened in modern times, and I am afraid very much constitutes forced assimilation. I am aware that most English people are not aware of this and don’t like it when they hear it, and perhaps the time for this to be recorded is not right yet but the people who say their grandparents experienced it are around. What about Scottish crofters? Was that not a type of ethnic cleansing?

      You can read the basics of it here:

      Here you can read about the English’s active discouragement of usage of Welsh:

      And here about Irish. Language is one of the thorniest issues in the peace process in Northern Ireland, as UK governments have been VERY negative toward the usage of Irish (since you want to talk about modern times):

      As you can see all the links I have provided are from Wikipedia…very easy to find. So, in terms of the debate, it would be good if you could do some background reading before you start making various claims because it makes the debate low-quality.

    • Paul X

      No Yasmine, linking to totally irrelavent data makes a debate low quality. What do posting links to Scottish, Welsh and Irish history bring to this discussion?

      Another thing that makes a debate low quality is continually and deliberately misquoting people, I have never used the word “Suppress” I said “Dilute” which has a totally different meaning (look it up) and my justification for my opinion (as I have already given several times) is the EU’s open border policy

      End of discussion as far as I’m concerned unless you can stay on topic

    • Yasmine

      I bet you want it to be the end of the conversation, Paul, because you don’t want it to be obvious how you have lost this one as well…and it is indeed, because, I have proven my point. You are very obviously confusing nationalism with national identity. I provided you with historical evidence simply because you seemed to doubt the events. I was doing you a service. This is not a history page. And you ought to educate yourself before you start denying historic facts (“please stop making things up about the UK when you clearly no nothing”). It is yourself that knows nothing. Your xenophobia exactly shows why the EU needs to fight nationalism and if opening borders is the way to do it, I say go ahead. And what you are assigning to Juncker was Churchill’s idea. Just read it. I won’t be quoting Wikipedia for you just to have you dismiss it as irrelevant.

    • Paul X

      No Yasmine it is best to end it because seem incapable of addressing the issues as raised. Somewhere near the beginning of this thread I state that the removal of borders by the EU dilutes national identity, and nothing you have said since proves otherwise
      Subsequent to that you have totally misquoted me several times using words like “ban” and “suppress” which if you care to check your dictionary do not mean the same as “dilute”
      You latest efforts at clouding the issue seems to be that because of the Highland clearances and historical mistreatment of the Welsh and Irish by the English (centuries ago) this somehow justifies your case for what the EU is doing today?
      Far from me losing the debate Yasmine, it is you who have totally lost the plot

    • Yasmine

      Paul, I was actually responding to EU citizen and not yourself. Here is what he said:
      that the EU is trying to ” diminish national identity “. You tried to take up the club for him but failed to prove how the EU does this. Instead, what you said was simply evidence that the EU is trying to create a supranational European identity, which is not the same thing and, as far as I am aware, is actually an Englishman’s idea. What I said was, since you didn’t get it the first time, instead of blaming the EU for something that you cannot prove in any way (there are specific ways of diminishing national identity and none are being practiced by the EU so how exactly is it diminishing anyone’s national identity?), you should instead feel ashamed that the English have done this in very obvious, specific and aggressive ways to the Native British populations. Obviously, that makes you feel uncomfortable and you dismissed the little bit of historic evidence of Wikipedia as irrelevant. I don’t think so. I think you are running for cover. You are trying to present nationalism as the equivalent of national identity but it’s not…The UKIP rot doesn’t appeal to everyone…

    • Guido Foi

      Next countries to destroy the EU:
      3)Spain and Portugal

    • Jesse-James Peters

      50% of British imports come from the EU and 40% of exports go there. Please tell us again how well Britain will do outside it.

    • Jesse-James Peters

      That article accounts for British German businesses. Not EU wide business. The numbers put by the British government put our exports to the EU at 40% of the total. As in, back in 2015 alone, we sent out £220 billion in exports to the EU our £510 billion exports total. If we go into importing it looks even more dire. Britain imports roughly 53% total goods from the EU. Combining total export/import numbers we can easily see that the EU accounts for over 40% of our trade total.

      But yes, it’s suicide for them. A trading bloc with a combined gdp 10% larger than the US should be scared and begging at the feet of the world’s 6th largest economy ( and shrinking).

    • Jesse-James Peters

      Hell, the article even says that the majority of business experts and economists in Germany are of the position that Britain will struggle. The one guy the interview in that article is of an extremely small minority. It seems that the majority of UK business owners and economists share the same opinion about brexit. That it was a bad move.

    • Ivan Burrows

      Jesse-James Peters

      Because of Brussels ability to create a crisis out of anything |German business are the EU.

      But maybe you are right & France, Spain, Greece, Portugal, Ireland, etc won’t mind losing 10 million jobs to appease the lunatic dogma of ever closer union so beloved by you pro EU extremists… but I doubt it.

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      @Jesse-James Peters
      You appear to be a hawker of ‘Cowboy statistics’ dear sir – the UK imports c43% [and FAST declining] of its world trade from the EU.

  5. klassen

    Yes Britain will flourish. Without having to pay/contribute billions to brussels they can restore and repair their own economy/country after the devastating destructive effects of an undemocratic eu.
    The uk got out in time because as of right now they are using ceta to push ttip in through the back door and along with that comes nafta (trojan Horse).
    Lets hope wallonia stands fast, belgium should be proud.
    Those ceta lovers have no idea of the devastating affects this will have for europe, nafta which is a part of ceta is the removal of power from regional govts. I have seen the affects of nafta and its not pretty. Its not trade its a corporate takeover.
    England got out in time for a reason, they know whats in store.

  6. Christos Mouzeviris

    Yes it will.. It will have a weakened position as a global player and economy but it will survive alright.. And if the rest of Europe doesn’t get its act together and continue to decline, Britain might eventually be better off..

    • Duncan

      Actually, the experts are saying to block free trade with the UK would damage the EU more in every field than it would damage the UK. So, it stands to reason “if” the experts can be trusted, (which I doubt anyway since the experts you get to listen to are cherry picked by people with an agenda, that’s before you even factor in for the incompetency of these experts, the same people who failed to predict the global crash a while back and then failed to implement changes to stop it reoccurring?) then it shows that DE are asking the wrong question. It’s also nonsense talk “hard brexit” “soft brexit” these are just terms of negotiation. The UK’s wanting free trade with the EU after we leave, if not free we will want as close to free as possible. We do not however want to be locked into laws we have no say over and huge membership fees like Norway must suffer through. The real question here I will the EU cut it’s nose off to spite it’s face and force a “hard brexit” onto the UK? If they do then the economy across all 28 states will get worse, at least in the short term. That’s the second problem with this thread, it’s looking at a 5 year window I’d estimate, as are the experts. Will the UK collapse or thrive outside the EU, that question will take decades to be able to answer. As for the plummeting of the pound and the record highs of the ftse100, these are traders panicking (the experts told them the pound would drop, and them selling their sterling made the experts right) and other traders taking advantage of the cheapening of everything sterling based in price. There’s in effect a fire sale going off right now. But if the pound doesn’t recover wages and export prices must increase to cover the gap. Long term economic damage I would therefore say is absolutely zero. I would say the economic benefits of better trade access globally will see an improvement long term. But the biggest benefits of brexit are social. With border control regained, so Lon as it is enforced we will see a drop off in worker exploitation, infrastructure overwhelming, housing prices making critical gains above and beyond affordability for wage rates, access for terrorists and criminals/smugglers. More importantly still, once those who have emigrated here gain citizenship and representation at elections and are not massively increased through other emigrats on a monthly basis, we will see a true and accurate rate of class voting power at elections, forcing fairer manifestos on those seeking to lead. No longer will we have to worry about a parliament in Brussels imposing laws and regulations on us without due process, and maybe, just maybe the Britain will once again become a land worthy of the prefix “Great”. But even if not, we will still survive, we will still have a better living standard than most and we will have regained our self respect.

    • EU citizen

      Duncan, just a quick question how are you going to stop wealthy oversea investors because they are the ones pushing house prices up. Just answer that.

  7. John Vincent

    Without a doubt. But if the question is will Britain and Europe be much poorer the answer is yes.

  8. Anti-EU Citizen

    LoL What kind of stulid question is that?Off course it can.They aren’t even in the doomed eurozone

  9. Tarquin Farquhar

    You forgot to mention:

    Plague of locusts.
    Invasion of frogs.
    Volcanic eruptions.
    Alien invasions.
    Planet X.
    The Nephilim.

    On a serious note, will the EU survive in its soon to be EU-27 incarnation?

    Will the EU become a de facto Latin-bloc as the demographic alliance of the Club Med countries will eventually usurp Germany’s current power and furnish the EU with all the ‘joys’ associated with a Latin-bloc culture?

    • Jesse-James Peters

      And the majority of those are poor and bad investments as trade partners. But ignoring that, there are EU like organisations cropping up across the world. ECOWAS, Mercosur, ASEAN. While Britain thinks it can go it better alone across the world new trade blocs are forming.

    • Yannick Herve

      Switzerland, Norway, South Korea, Taiwan…

    • Yannick Herve

      Not UE like organization, just trade agreement, not “European Commission” structure.

  10. Julia Hadjikyriacou

    The UK financial sector doesn’t really care about anybody or anything except their own profits. Huge profits,a low pound, de-regulation and the safety of their huge network of tax havens in the overseas territories is all they care about, including any dodgy trade and business deals to take advantage of the huge UK consumer base.

  11. Tarquin Farquhar

    @Davide Zoran Parenti

    IF the UK does flounder it can always join a trade bloc other than the EU!

    The EU’s aggressive, irrational, illogical, undemocratic and childish behaviour means that we will NOT rejoin such a juvenile and undemocratic institution – this can only mean that the EU will be (as its geographic and demographic trends already highlight) an inferior and declining bloc.

  12. Stefano Gi

    Letting UK finally become poor country will finally solve the problem of that big unwanted immigration!

    • Cameron Teague

      Wishful thinking par excellence. UK is not chained to the € and now it is freer than before.

  13. Dino Boy Mican

    Yes, man. Why not? The UK has some assets namely finance, insurance, gas and education. Go for it Britain.

    • Peter Collier

      The banks are making plans to leave

    • Martin Green

      Who’s a sick man of Europe ?

    • Martin Green

      Civil servant Lmao ain’t you got work to be getting on with

    • Peter Collier

      We staggered out of the IMF into the EU

    • Jesse-James Peters

      Before Britain joined it was the sick man of Europe.

    • Michael Crahart

      It will be the Sick Man of Europe forever now 😂

    • Peter Collier

      We didn’t , we were fecked before

    • Jesse-James Peters

      As an empire Britain thrived. Britain is no longer an empire. As for needing us. No, they really don’t. 40% of our exports go to the EU but only 8% come back. They need us like they need an outbreak of cholera.

    • Jon Bromfield

      Your right. Looks like they need us like a hole in the head

    • Pirvulescu Florin

      Since Germany and France are behind the EU, no EU is not finished without UK.

      EU was always a Franco-German thing.

    • Bryan Martin

      eU is finished without UK.
      Says a Romanian !!!!

    • Denes Varga

      The UK is a big nothing. A market only, without any proper stuff, any proper engineering. Just take a look at the buildings and that crap, they call cars.

    • Jon Bromfield

      Think it might be the other way round. Feel free to explain your thoughts. But obviously you cant

  14. Susan Hutchison

    Yes of course we can ..trouble with this country is we been under the EU for too long being drip fed etc …grow a backbone and tell the EU to shove their single market see how they will panicked

    • Terry Johnson

      Why would they worry about 8 to 13% of their exports when they take between 40 and 51% of ours we have a surplus with the eu of £21.4billion in services much if which will go when we lose the eu passport

  15. Pete Smith

    Of course we can the 14% that the uk export to the eu can easily be made up with new trade deals with the rest of the world anyway we import more trade into the uk from the eu tell them to go get stuffed. Sumbitch

    • Jesse-James Peters

      We export 40% of our exports to the EU. Where did you get 14% from? As for new trade deals. Won’t work like that. It takes decades for trade deals to be reached and the finance industry will leave long before that happens.

    • Pete Smith

      Yes 40% in total 14% of that is in ref to financial services that generates more income into the uk.

    • Jon Bromfield

      So please explain where these trade deals are coming from? Not the USA or japan

    • Pete Smith

      China, russia, new zealand, australia, india, shall i go on

    • Paul X

      40% exports to the EU is a pretty reasonable figure, though 10 years ago it was over 50%, and the downward trend is continuing, so what does that tell you?

  16. Michael Crahart

    Britain will go back to being the Sick Man of Europe, only this time there’s no hospital 😂

    • Duncan

      ? I think you need a history lesson, as well as a world affairs update. Lot’s of countries were, are and will be more financially & morally ill than the UK across the EU. And as the EU continues to admit new members this will get worse.

    • Pat Knowles

      There wasn’t last time either. And there isn’t a hospital bin the EU- ask the Greeks.

  17. Andrew Tingate

    If being an independent nation again means we’ll be poor, then why are their wealthier independent nations than us?

    • Terry Johnson

      Expect they have natural resources to sell or a strong manufacturing base neither of which we have

    • Andrew Tingate

      We have oil and gas, Falklands and north sea. We had a manufacturing base before the eu…motor industry was wiped out by German and French imports. And with similar incentives like Nissan enjoy, we can encourage companies to come here, not hard.

    • Jon Bromfield

      AndrewTingate. Where have you been over the last few years?? Thanks to the last government we have had years of Austerity where the rich have got ritcher and the poor got poorer. Since Brexit its got a lot worse. Please feel free to explain your thiughts

    • Andrew Tingate

      Since brexit…hasn’t happened yet…

  18. Paul Sharpling

    I think we have a long way to go before we can overtake Italy, France, Greece and some southen countries and claim the title of sick man of Europe. Sick of Europe is much more likely

    • David Lawes

      In the 70s the UK was a picture of health compared to Italy or Greece now!

    • Lee Rutter

      Paul, nice comment!!

    • Jon Bromfield

      Tell me why things have got worse since Brexit then? You guys pass comments but can’t back them

    • Dominic Finlay

      Jon, Brexit hasn’t happened yet :p

  19. Ian

    The question of hard or soft is total bull dreamed up by the Remoaners, worded such so hard sounds difficult and soft sounds easy. The fact is, it is either Brexit as the people voted for which includes leaving the single market and jurisdiction of the European Court, that gives full control of our borders, laws, finance. Or no brexit, even free movement of workers wouldn’t work because they would insist on Europen Court jurisdiction over them, which we cannot have if U.K law is to be supreme, end of, Leavers know what we voted for, all of this is scaremongering by the Remoaners trying to scare enough people who voted leave to change their mind in the hope of reversing the people’s will. Don’t Remoaners understand that if they succeed in their folly and over rule the people then Democracy is dead in this country, why should anyone bother to vote or follow the law, what’s the point, we would be living as slaves with no voice.

  20. カメニャク マリオ

    Depends… I can see parts of it secceeding, but I wouldn’t say it will die. I mean I am hoping for a socdem or anarchist revolution im it, but I am hoping for that in the whole world anyways.

    • Duncan

      It would be better out of the single market, but with free trade with the single market are. This is also still better for the EU than a WTO situation which would see us buy from elsewhere what we buy from the EU presently. I’m hoping some of this potential market is filled with increased local purchasing, but I’m too realistic to think it will be a significant increase.

    • Jon Bromfield

      Wow what a stupid statement. Those wars brought unity to the UK Brexit only brings devision. Possibly the break up of our great nation

  21. Danny Boy

    The UK can survive outside the single market,of course it can,but only a fool would believe they’rd be better of out of it.This whole Brexit is a lose lose scenario for both sides.

    • Duncan

      So, those countries that currently thrive trading with the single market from outside the single market are fools, or imaginary in your eyes?

    • David

      Those countries have trade deals already, some of them have less people relying on social welfare and provide no free healthcare, other countries are rich in tems of natural resourcea per capita (including land) etc. In view of all this yes it is possible to be outside the single market but leaving it is not the same as not joining it in the first place. We need to know our strenghts before stepping into the unknown (good or bad).

  22. Pat Knowles

    We survived without the single market up till (from memory) 15 years ago. Indeed the single market is not yet complete, so one could say we are. Hong Kong and Singapore seem to get by somehow, even without any natural resources and being outside the EU customs barriers.
    Of course we can survive.
    Of coursec if we apply the policies assumed in the various project fear analyses then we won’t do very well. If we follow more sensible policies we will thrive.
    Don’t forget there is a big downside to the actual single market- sure it makes inter-country trade easier, that’s the advantage. But the complicated set of rules governing it depress trade within countries.

    • Peter Savage

      Got to disagree there Hong Kong and Singapore have a wealth of natural resource in what I feel is possibly the most underrated resource in the world at this moment in history …… A willing workforce ……

    • Pat Knowles

      In that sense yes, also good access to the sea. But there are more willing workers in Britain than we usually get credit for. Just give them sensible rules and stop telling them nonsense (not that you have, but they don’t half hear a lot.

    • Peter Savage

      Sorry got to disagree again Pat ….. Its not just UK but in my experience most of Europe …. Too many lazy people … The main problem I see is youngsters gaining what I feel is too much money at too early an age without really having to work hard for it …. I know I’m an old man now and defiantly old school but at age of 63 I put in a 15 hour day on a regular basis but am amazed by the number of guys a third my age who say they can’t possibly do it ….sorry … Rant over

    • Pat Knowles

      I’ve met plenty of those too- mostly youngsters with a certificate to say that they’re brighter than anyone else, which they get by always agreeing with teacher. But there’s gold as well. We can’t have it all unfortunately.

    • Jon Bromfield

      Pat Knowles. How can it be project fear when the facts are for real…The pound down. Inflation up. A country divided. A government that havnt a clue. Your out of touch buddy

    • Pat Knowles

      The governor of the bank of England has spent years trying to reduce the value of the pound- it reduces imports and enhances exports. Whether his eventual success was aided by the vote (yet to be implemented) or not we’ll likely never know, but the effort started with Mr. Carney’s appointment. Similarly the bank has been trying to induce inflation (makes price adjustments happen and hence frees the economy from stagnation). Still work to do there, we’re way short of 2%.
      Growth (as against forecasts) is steady, though it’s early days- the final revision for the first quarter after the vote won’t be for months yet, though most revisions are up. FTSE is well up both 100 and 250.
      Tourism is up. Consumer spending is up.
      Apparently even Gideon worked out that an emergency budget is unnecessary.
      Lots to come, but no disasters yet.

  23. Alasdair

    Of course Britain can, survive and prosper. You only need to look at the abortion the EU have made of the CETA trade negotiations, I am sure Britain can make a mutually beneficial trade agreement with Canada with no problems.

  24. Geoffrey Lewis

    We don’t need the single market, in the paper today they said that the EU would have to spend 8 billion more than us in tariffs, so the government could use this money to subsidise our exporters, sorted.

    • Jon Bromfield

      Another moron being fed drivil by the express or mail

    • Andrew Pattinson

      Do you read the Mail or Express Jon Bromfield?

    • Geoffrey Lewis

      Daily mail 2nd largest selling newspaper in the UK, I suppose you are one of those moaning remainers we voted OUT get over it

    • Prenders Mac

      I read in the Daily Mail about lemmings walking off a cliff because they were instructed to..

    • Geoffrey Lewis

      It wouldn’t surprise me if you a guardian reader

  25. David Lawes

    The single market is the biggest waste of space ever created. Who wants to trade with broke ass Greece?

  26. David Lawes

    If the single market is so good, why did the Portuguese start to emigrate to Angola to find work? Until the Angolan government clamped down on work visas to protect local jobs for local Angolans (sensible bunch)?

    • Jon Bromfield

      I don’t live in Portugal, I live in England and all I know is the pound has dropped inflation is on the up and I now live in a decided country…

    • David Lawes

      Sorry Jon but there’s no gain without pain. I shudder to think what would have happened if we’d voted to remain in Europe. Forced quotas of so-called refugees from non-EU countries like Syria, and of course eventual adoption of the Titanic Euro. Time to re-establish ourselves as an independent localist nation like Oz or NZ and negotiate our own trade deals with the rest of the world.

    • Jon Bromfield

      David Lawes. So we all suffer because some of us don’t like immigrants? To me that borders on racial discrimination. We had agreed only to take 20 ,000 refugees over 5 years so its hardly forced. Get your facts right buddy

    • David Lawes

      No it doesn’t, it’s localism not racism, putting the needs of those already here before those of incomers. For that I make no apology whatsoever.

    • David Lawes

      The Aussies and Kiwis are extremely localist thanks to powerful trade unions intent on protecting local jobs for local Aussies and Kiwis. Both nations are nonetheless multi cultural, as 2 stays in Western Sydney taught me.

    • Pat Knowles

      Yes, poverty like Greece, unemployment like the rest of the EU. If the EU were richer than the UK then EU citizens would come to Britain to retire and Brits would go to EU countries in search of work, instead of vice versa.

  27. Nick Coulson

    There is no hard or soft Brexit only Brexit. Every one on the remain side said it meant being outside the Single market. So be it. We will survive, question is can the EU. Or more importantly their member states.

    • Peter Collier

      Aww listen to you with your delusions

    • Pat Knowles

      Depends what the member states choose to do.
      Greece seriously needs a devaluation, as to a lesser extent do Ireland Portugal,Italy and arguably France. That means leaving the Euro. If the EU insist that means leaving the EU, that’s their call.
      German non EU trade is nearly as high a proportion of their external trade as ours is. They could do with leaving the customs union. Again it’s up to them.

  28. Jon Bromfield

    Of course it can. We will all be financially poorer. And those of us who can afford it will be paying a lot more for our hols abroad. Plus we have a very right wing government that havnt. A clue but we will survive

    • Andrew Pattinson

      Fabulous rhetoric. But can you back it up with evidence? The floor is yours, show me how what you just posted is going to happen………….

    • Jon Bromfield

      Andrew Pattinson. I don’t have to back it up. Just open your eyes and watch the news buddy. The pound is down. Inflation up. A government that hasn’t a clue plus a country decided. So anything else. Now let me know your thoughts after you have watched the news

    • Kristoph Wattoph

      We survived before we can survive again! Lol is the world the same today as before? as anyone asked that? Environment shapes behaviour that’s all I got to say!

    • Pat Knowles

      A county divided? Well yes there’s more than one political party. There is no general strike, no civil war, far fewer marches and protests (and generally less violent ones) than in the past.
      Governments rarely have a clue, nothing new there. Heath and Wilson didn’t have a clue (either that or they were self serving traitors, and I don’t buy that either).
      Or perhaps decided wasn’t, as I suppose, a typo? In which case yes indeed, we have decided.

    • Jon Bromfield

      Pat knowles So how do explain The fact that since Brexit Scottish independence is on the agender again. The big increase in racial abuse. The decisive nature of brexit. . I’ve never known the country so devided

    • Jon Bromfield

      Kristoph Wattoph. I don’t just want to survive . I want to live and have a bright future for my children. Doesn’t look like that’s going to happen since brexit

    • Duncan

      So, you’re saying by staying in it’s hurting our economy? Besides, are you any poorer? Have you noticed vast increases in the cost of living? Because I haven’t. Petrol’s gone up a bit, but it’s been higher than this before. Everything else costs the same as it used to, and my wages have stayed the same. If the pound keeps dropping then since I work for Bosch they’ve really got no excuse to not increase my wages significantly as the Euro-Pound exchange rate means it will be no increase to them at all. This elitist regime that is globalisation may be feeling the sting of brexit hysteria, but I’m not!

    • Pat Knowles

      We had an overvalued currency, now we have an undervalued one. The countries of southern Europe including France have overvalued currencies. Hence the change in “league position”.
      Personally I’ll take low unemployment and high growth (relative to Europe anyway) in exchange for a temporary high league position.

    • Peter Collier

      The trade gap in the United Kingdom widened by GBP 2.5 billion to GBP 4.7 billion in August from July of 2016. Imports jumped 5.5 percent boosted by electrical machinery and aircraft while exports edged up a meager 0.1 percent.

    • Peter Collier

      Britain’s trade deficit with the rest of the world widened, as growth in imports rose faster than exports, and retail sales were flat as shoppers were put off by higher clothing prices

    • Ron James

      It is because we haven’t left yet that we have dropped to seventh !

  29. Dennis Fraser

    Of course it can we survived before it we will survive afre it.i wish all these bankers and politicians who lost would stop trying to run down the country stop there nonsense and get behind the country .

    • Pat Knowles

      Or try to. They’ll charge as much as they can get away with, regardless.
      I note that the Irish are having trouble with price hikes since the pound devaluation- and they are in the Euro.

    • Matt Ireland

      Slump In the pound, or strength of the dollar, which has outperformed the seven biggest currencies for the past two months? The pound is at the same level it was against the euro for all of 2013, and much higher than in 2008 where it was 1:1.02

    • Peter Collier

      Keep on chanting the same old rubbish and maybe like a religious person you’ll believe it

    • Peter Collier

      Nestlé, the food giant behind products like Nescafé, Aero chocolate and the famous four-fingered bar, is considering increasing its prices in the UK to compensate for the plummet in the pound’s value.

    • Peter Collier

      Apple managed to smuggle in a price rise of its own when it announced new iPhones and boosted the storage available on iPads. The new phones cost 11% to 15% more than the devices they were replacing

  30. Felipe Reis

    Yes, it can. But i predict social problems. We didn’t create an integrated society, and social problems, mainly in London and Birmingham , will flare. Many people depends on the consuming society. If the economy contracts as expected 8% to 12% in ten years, population will have to contract. Benefits will be much lower. Only the rich will be richer. Meanwhile, the grey army, the 10% that voted BREXIT won’t be alive. Too much ignorance, starting with the politicians. Nobody listens to wise people anymore.

    • Paul X

      …..and what about the current social problems throughout the EU due to it’s idiotic open door immigration and free movement policies? whatever your “prediction” for the future of the UK if it wasn’t for the English Channel we’d already have major social issues

    • Yasmine

      But Paul, the UK already does. What about people blowing themselves up on trains because they don’t agree with the foreign policy of the government? Or wanting to practice FGM and Sharia law? Aren’t these social problems? Have you hear about air travel btw? You don’t need to travel over land these days.

    • Paul X

      Yasmine, my response is to Felipe who seems to think social problems in the UK will get worse because of Brexit. My counter point is that EU policies are creating major social issues within Europe so to leave the EU will clearly not make things any worse (than they already are) for the UK
      Strange though it may seem I have heard of air travel, (I have even experienced myself on the odd occasion)…and the good thing about air travel is that illegal people cannot use it, which is why people who have been allowed to illegally enter Europe and allowed to travel unchecked all the way to Calais, cannot illegally enter the UK

    • Yasmine

      I’m pretty sure you’re rephrasing, Paul… Just read your own post again. So you don’t think that people dying because of Muslim extremism is a major social problem? But how good is it checking passports when UK citizens blow themselves up on a train?
      Oddly enough, you call the EU idiotic. Fancy that!

    • Paul X

      You call it rephrasing, I call it having to explain in simple terms
      Ref: my first post, the social problems due to free movement are for example those those suffered by Germany,Sweden & France caused by large groups of immigrants, and as I correctly state, the UK has not suffered in a similar fashion because it is not so easy to get here…easy enough to understand?

      And home grown terrorist attacks are not a social problem, they are random acts carried out by a very small minority of weak minded idiots who have been radicalised, usually over the internet, there is a big difference

    • Yasmine

      Ha ha ha , the difference is in your mind because you don’t want to acknowledge that your comment was incorrect…the UK’s problems due to its immigrant populations (presumably arrived by plane) are obvious to many.

    • Paul X

      Yasmine, my comment is 100% correct, clearly your English comprehension is not so…..shall I “rephrase” again?

      ok…here we go

      UK immigration problems are not on the same scale (quote “major” ) as (for example) Germany’s, Sweden’s and France’s due to the UK not having the same (quote “idiotic”) freedom of movement policy and the English channel

      There is only so many times I can rewrite the same statement so I hope it sinks in soon…

      ….and what qualifies you as an expert on what you think are the existing UK immigration problems? (reading the Daily Mail does not count btw)

    • Yasmine

      Terrorist attacks by the children of immigrants! And no I don’t need to read any specific paper to know about them. They are on the news on TV! Have you got one?

  31. Ian Harvey

    If the single market is so good why is france insolvent italy bankrupt portugal Spain and Greece crippled with unemployment?

    • Rob Morgan

      Of course, there will be some adjustment time but the EU is fundamentally about the single market. All the talk about world wide free trade is a red herring, it’s a convenience to the EU not a necessity.

  32. Rácz Tivadar

    Europe, the entire World had lived for many Millenia without Market and unión – as these are just a sick and stupid construction to defeat and make countries dependable from eachother.

  33. John Mason-Morris

    Rock hard Brexit. Its down to Government planning and cohesion or lack therof. They could not plan a round of drinks in a brewery. A competent goverment would have already planned for 2yrs to give the UK a better deal outside the EU than in.

    • Duncan

      Cameron prohibited it. Thank goodness he’s gone! I dislike many politicians, I especially have a deep hatred of most of what Margaret Thatcher did, but David Cameron and his Chancellor are the only two Politicians I can say with absolute certainty knew what they were doing was bad for the country. Margaret Thatcher may just have been very short sighted in her approach, Cameron and Osborne would have to have been brain damaged to not know how badly they were screwing the country up. You don’t get into high end UK politics if you’re brain damaged, so that means they knew and they did it anyway.

  34. Paul Sharpling

    Jon Bromfield. You asked me why things have got worse since Brexit. I disopute that, but I would ask you two questions:

  35. Neil Redmore

    A ridiculous question! Can we prosper as an independent nation free to trade with the world? Easy answer – yes of course we will!

    • Dan Mercer

      Before the eu we were all over the world rebuilding countrys and economies. We will be better off by ourselfs

  36. Paul Sharpling

    Of all the major problems in the world and in the EU like poverty, inance, fcurrency imbalance, immigration, war, the rise of extreme nationalism,, would you tell me which ones the EU had got even close to solving? Light bulbs, vacuum cleaners, candles, bananas, shower heads, it appears that even these trivialities pleased no-one but the producers of the goods.

  37. Tony Cartwright

    Listening to the doom monger from Remain groups SKY and BBC you would think the country was going down the pan

  38. John Flinders

    When we can drop the draconian 10.5% tariffs attached to trading with countries outside the single currency and adapt world trade organisation tariffs Europe might change their stance on their rhetoric on negotiating either way the UK will only be stronger. The second world war was to free Europe from tyranny but politicians have led us into the same tyranny without a shot being fired

    • Jason James Fryer

      If you are even suggesting that the the “tyranny” of the EU is comparable to the third reich, you are incredibly misinformed.
      More emotive ‘wisdom’ from the people that felt the need to take their own pens.
      God help us!

    • Rob Morgan

      John , you do understand why those external tariffs are there don’t you?

    • John Flinders

      The ultimate aim of the EU is to reduce the nation’s to states, governments to councils and be ruled by the EU commission, not a flight of fancy but written into all the treaties that have been signed. The Third Reich started out much like the EU and was taken over by a group of thugs and took the freedoms from the European countries. Answer the question why does a trading organisation want an armed force, and yes the external tariffs are their to protect the single market

  39. Stephen Rodgers

    Rest of the world dosnt have a single market .
    Stop saying that we MIGHT lose some trade with 5 hundred million EU customers .
    There are ANOTHER 6.5 BILLION possible trade customers in the world .

  40. Owen Kent

    Yes.Nissan staying banks staying.Everyday a scare tactic falls on its arse.No free trade ,e.u lose loads more than us.Potential trade deals everywhere.Live your lives in fear if you must.Not me.

    • Mike Ward

      Reports this morning of the banks moving again deals when next week next month next year or next decade ….m

    • Owen Kent

      Not seen those.News said yesterday on all channels they were staying.

    • Matt Ireland

      Reports today of Nissan expanding production in Sunderland, and not one bank has come forward to say they will leave (Just watching the Daily Politics show.) Obviously we can’t make trade deals whist still bound by EU laws, but there are plenty of countries in line. Not least of which Canada, which is walking away from the EU shaking it’s head at the ineptitude of a trading block that can’t even agree with itself. Seven years of negotiations down the pan due to a minority group in Belgium…Add to that the warnings of the government, IMF, World Bank and Bank of England that the UK would suffer an IMMEDIATE financial downturn, only to see the exact opposite.

  41. David Bebbington

    I still find it bemusing that people talk about trade with the rest of the world whilst slagging of….

    1) The largest trading g block in the world!
    2) 27 foreign countries. Which is starting to effect or international reputation! We should want o trade with everyone not argue over who gets the Bob Marley CD is this divorce. The mob behaviour is what will hurt our economy far more than ‘Remoaners. Now shut up, smile and sell the country to investors you miserable people and stop talking openly how much you hate everyone else! We have a business to run!

    • Duncan

      So, you think remoaners demonstrating are not a mob? You think that juncker isn’t trying to create a gang up on UK mob? I agree that bickering and pettiness is a waste of time, but I don’t think you can pin the blame exclusively on the more racist groups of brexit supporters who just want rid of foreigners completely. They are a mob, granted. But they are not the only ones.

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      @David Bebbington
      The USA overtook the EU-28 this year as a trading bloc.
      The EU-27 just compounds the EUs declining status.
      China will overtake the EU-27 in the next 3-5 years.

      The EU-27 is a dead corpse walking!

  42. Russell Bancroft

    Easy the question is can Europe survive without the UK. I think its more of a problem for them than us

    • Rob Morgan

      Then you have missed to whole point of the single market, to protect and improve those who are in it.

    • Russell Bancroft

      Are you real protect who. The single market doesn’t protect anyone, the UN provides security and the common market does not allow freedom of trade unless it’s dictated bye their laws. Fact

  43. Adrian Cotterill

    Yes we’ll adapt to the ever changing circumstances , the wider question will be what will happen to the EU without us , will Germany alone be able to prop up the others , you can only really see a house of cards situation if they fracture relations with us.

  44. catherine benning

    The obvious and correct answer to this question is, Britain cannot survive within it.

    The EU has betrayed all the people and their nation States who went for it. Any one of them wanting to remain within this banking Globalist cacophony have lost their minds. They have signed up for cultural and social suicide. All of them. And whilst doing so, have lied continuously to their people who foolishly believed in them.

    The French had the right idea when they called for Liberté, égalité, fraternité.

  45. Richard Freeman

    What people seem to be missing here, or at least are choosing to ignore, is that the EU itself is in trouble?!. We needed to get out for this reason as much as for any other. Of course there’s going to be a period of upheaval and uncertainty while we re-establish ourselves in new trading relationships and arrangements both in Europe and across the world. But gradually, as we achieve this, we will see our country rise, whereas the EU will continue to decline because of the inherent problems within, for which it still has no solution?!.. namely the financial crisis centred around the Euro and Greece, but which will also increasingly include other countries as well. Secondly there is also still no credible solution to the migration problem. These two unresolved, and quite possibly unsolvable problems will eventually break the EU, at least in it’s present form, damaging all those countries which remain. We on the other hand will have got over the initial difficulties of establishing a new trading position, and will therefore be in a better position generally than those still clinging to the wreckage of the flawed EU dream!.. and needless to say in a far better position than we would have been if we had been fooled by operation fear, and voted to stay in!?

  46. Mark Lawton

    Yes britain can survive. I’d be more concerned if the single market can survive without us.

  47. Matt Ireland

    Well, we probably won’t have to spend seven years negotiating with Canada before seeing the whole thing fall on its arse due to a minority group in Belgium. It’s very obvious the EU can’t do trade deals as it can’t even agree with itself, let alone other countries!

    • Rob Morgan

      What if it ‘fell on its arse’ for good reason ? The EU isn’t about external trade deals, they can take them or leave them, just a convenience. Anyway, we were told the EU is undemocratic yet there was an example of a small voice not being forced by a larger.

    • Matt Ireland

      The good reason being a small group not liking it, as opposed to the majority. I think you’ll find that’s pretty much text book “undemocratic”. But are you trying to insinuate that after seven years of negotiations, and the costs and efforts that went into it, the EU decided to “leave it”? The one single reason the EU doesn’t appear to be about external trade deals is that it’s massively obvious it can’t make them!

    • Peter Collier

      Like sub Sahara Africans abs die in your 30s

  48. BillyBob McGoofle

    hard brexit will mean out of control ultra capitalists assets stripping anything thats not nailled down, the ‘free market’ etremists like redwood wont tell you hat the ‘red tape’ the tories whine about stops them from implementing low pay low skills low benefit mcjobs, they also wont say or stop the low pound allows foriegn investors to buy british companies at knock down prices, the whole hard brexit is an ultra capitalist con trick which is why its supported by millionare foriegn press barrons registered in the bahamas for tax purposes, as for taking power from an unelected elite erm well ….. tories

  49. David John Cook

    Europe will kick our arse for being quitters. Noone likes what we’ve done and Europe will protect its own members.

    • Duncan

      If Europe (I think you mean the EU) wants to protect it’s members then it should allow us a very smooth divorce. All the figures show the EU will suffer more from any “retribution tactics” in the negotiations.

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      @Peter Collier

      It means more UK exports to the USA and many other [dollar-denominated] countries in the world!

  50. Peter Collier

    British manufacturers are facing higher production costs because of more expensive supplies and other materials they need to import.

    • Duncan

      But can raise prices for the same reason without it costing their customers any extra. This is such a half thought out reasoning.

  51. Peter Collier

    Despite the falling pound, “The volume of exported goods is actually lower than it was before the Brexit vote,”

    • Duncan

      Not according to the data I’ve been given. Where are you getting your information from?

  52. Darren Pedro Gonzalez Johnston

    The EU will have to fork out £13billion to cope with our trade tariffs if they boot us out, this is why the media make it sound like it’s the only safe option, the EU will not survive if they lose their biggest customer and have to pay £13billion in tariffs and extra costs they force on themselves when we leave the single market.. They could’ve let us continue with no free movement but in typical EU style, they prefer to cut off their nose to spite their face.. Hard brexit all the way, I want to see them beg for our forgiveness and I really hope we show them no mercy!!

    • Björn Eric Ingemar Grahn

      The tariffs goes both ways so arter Youtube nullify The equal amounts is it yust The questiun how will have tarifs luft to par.

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      @Björn Eric Ingemar Grahn
      Is your EU percentage figure referring to EU-27 or EU-28?

      Please kindly elaborate – thank you.

  53. Gillian Conway

    They need us more than we need them France and Germany export to us far more than we export to them

    • Graeme Curran

      But the rest of the world doesn’t have a country half full of scared negative whiners with no confidence in their country.

  54. Yordan Vasilev

    Yes, she can, because the Great Britain has old connections with the countries of her Empire and she will use these economic resourses.

  55. Freddie Allen

    We need to stop apologizing for what is perceived by some to be our brutal conquest of the world,and start reminding people that 50plus % of all inventions,discoveries,understandings of science and medicine,chemistry and life changing understanding of our world came from this tiny island (think I’m wrong look it up the list is staggering),of course we can make it, and we are not alone in this world we have many friends and allies

    • Duncan

      Yes, and we want the EU (or it’s member states individually if need be) to stay on that list of friends and allies, the EU should want that too. So why is Junker trying to make things difficult and cause dissent?

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      Well said!

      JCJ would never be a leader in a ‘proper’ country as a ‘proper’ country has a free press that would highlight his dodgy dealings with ‘big business’ and his alarming propensity to imbibe beverages of an alcoholic persuasion.

      JCJ’s decision-making, his alcohol habit, his backroom horse-trading with ‘big business’ and his ‘over-touchy-feely-ness’ are not what one would expect from a leader of a town council, never mind a ‘country-on-paper’ like Luxembourg or indeed an unwieldy ‘in-the-making-superstate’.

  56. Chris Pavlides

    People vote OUT for multi reasons connected with your failures. Why it has to be hard or soft for them?

  57. latino heat

    Sure but it will still be fun to see little englanders kick and scream when it doesn’t go as they expected.

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      @Latino Heat
      Your nom-de-plume automatically devalues any gravitas associated with your puerile comment.

  58. catherine benning

    Don’t be so gullible. The drop in sterling is a traders manipulation. Surely you must have been aware this would be pulled on the UK as people kicked back against the banking globalists at last, by voting to get out of their ‘family.’

    The truth is, they are terrified that should the EU disintegrate, they, the banking globalists, will find it hard to keep a grip on our money, life and politics. In other words, their rule of debt will be busted. And those living off our largesse are running scared. Who will pay their rent.

    Brexit was a call for freedom. And as a result the banking network will lose absolute power. So now they have manipulated financial markets in order to spread terror through the people. It’s all done with mirrors.

    And worse, our leaders are as dumb as a group of headless chickens running frantically around the garden claiming to be alive. They have no knowledge of how they have been taken for runts.

    Brexit is the world’s saviour. Be grateful for it.

    • Paul X

      Maia, the fact you (and others) on here feel the need to continually tell us Brexit is a mistake is surely only done to cause arguments? the simple fact is something like this has never happened before and no-one knows the outcome and will not know for several years to come. To claim it is a mistake is just speculation and as ill-informed as if I was to come on here and claim the UK will be the wealthiest country in Europe in 10 years…who knows eh?… certainly not me or you unless your crystal ball is better than mine?
      It seems endemic on these forums that non-UK posters love to preach doom and gloom and want to see the UK fail, and to me that is either jealously because they have not been given the same democratic option as the UK or they feel the lack of confidence in their own country should be shared by the UK.
      Well for your information the UK public are confident in their country and its abilities and we have given the EU 40 years to prove itself and it has failed to deliver anything of enough significance to justify the amount we have invested in it, so it’s time to move on

    • Yasmine

      Paul, just to confirm that your post to Maia made me laugh a lot. You clearly are a well-intentioned person but lack the information.

    • Paul X

      I’m glad I brought a little humor to your day Yasmine, but please desist from the belittling comments. You have no more information on this topic than anyone else and considering you are a non UK resident who has only the media to rely on for your “facts” , I can say without contradiction, you will know less than me

    • Yasmine

      Paul, like a genuine ignoramus you have no consciousness of what it is that you don’t know and you come up with statements with such confidence. But others don’t have the same confidence in your statements. It is funny. Read Socrates. He was a very modest man.

    • Yasmine

      By the way, Paul. Greece had its own referendum and wishes that it didn’t. so actually, we know more than you. You say we rely on the media for our information but obviously you don’t even bother with the media before you come up with triumphant statements…

    • Paul X

      On the contrary, I do follow the media. I just don’t blindingly accept that it is all the truth and spend my time re-quoting what I’ve read to make out I’m some kind of expert with a superior intellect

    • Yasmine

      I’m glad you’re taking a more modest approach now! See, you have benefited from the debate with me.

  59. Maia Alexandrova

    It will survive, but in what shape or form and at what cost? If the overwhelming vote of the Scottish and Irish people to remain in the EU is not respected, then Britain will very likely end up as Kingdom of England and much poorer as a result of the hard Brexit (it will be hard!). Those who voted to leave felt too secure in themselves and took too many things for granted – essential things that over time have become dependent on UK’s membership in the EU, such as economic stability and the union of British nations. All they could see was EU immigration which they perceived as the biggest problem of all, but failed to acknowledge how Britain is so deeply integrated into the EU on so many levels that even the slightest risk to that connection can produce an earthquake reaching far beyond UK’s borders… Once that connection is lost, the ground under your feet disappears and you begin falling, until you eventually find another ground to replace it with… How long will this take? What will happen in the meantime? It turns out you cursed the European Union and wished for its destruction, but in the end you will destroy your own British union and its economic prosperity… Sad, but it seems the only possible lesson that the self-absorbed Brexiters can understand…

    • Duncan

      Wow, just wow! So the United Kingdoms existence was only possible because we were in the EU centuries after the UK’s creation? Fascinating opinion! As for the overwhelming vote of the Scottish and Irish to remain in the EU, how was it overwhelming? If it was overwhelming then the majorities in England and Wales would have not been enough for a majority leave result. Northern Ireland’s remain majority was far less consistent than in Scotland. But, and here’s the key point really THE UK WAS ASKED IF THE UK SHOULD REMAIN OR LEAVE NOT EACH SEPERATE COUNTRY! Much the same as if the EU had had a referendum on wether to split apart, and England had voted yes, but the majority ruled for no England would have had to go along with the democratic majority decision. And just as with a general election If my constituency voted for a labour MP, but more constituencies vote for a UKIP MP, we end up with a UKIP government. It’s how it works. I’m not going to pretend to be able to see the future, but I can see that your post has no content and is made up of bad feelings towards people who voted to leave. Finances will probably fluctuate, but balance off. The Union will stay intact, Northern Ireland don’t even question if they should leave the UK, neither does wales, only the SNP are calling for seperating, and the figures show the people of Scotland wouldn’t vote to leave the UK. There will indeed need to be changes, but leaving the EU was the first change that needed to happen, now we can start on the other changes too.

    • Paul X

      Maia, I suggest you come up with some more “essential things” that the UK depends upon the EU for as your two examples really do not help your cause. The union of British nations has been around for 310 years, the EEC/EU has been around for less than 60, if anything, the EU is likely to be responsible for destroying the Union which is hardly a positive vote for the EU is it?
      ..and your reference to economic stability must be a joke right? surely even you know the UK is out side the Eurozone and cannot have failed to notice how “stable” the economies of those inside is?
      …and it’s time to change the record about immigration being the main reason for Brexit. Accept that not everyone is like you and believes every word from the Right wing gutter press. Many perfectly normal, intelligent people voted to leave for the simple reason the EU is a self centered political project run by (and for the benefit of) second rate politicians which is arrogant in its attitude to the public, profligate and rife with corruption & cronyism and far removed from the trading institution it was originally sold as, I don’t think any other reasons to leave are necessary

    • Maia Alexandrova

      Duncan and Paul,

      Unfortunately, you rely only on empty optimism that has no base in the present reality. You are looking into the distant past to justify your opinion. People who voted to leave have no idea how Britain should actually leave – what is best for everyone, what terms to insist on, etc., as every agreement depends on two parties agreeing and you cannot force your demands on Scotland and Northern Ireland, or control EU parliament. The British society is split, regardless of the 1 million slight majority in favour of leaving. This referendum cannot be compared to a simple election because the consequences of who is elected are not so significant, but UK leaving EU will be seriously life-changing for everyone. It is an internal conflict that cannot simply be played down with the fact of the referendum result which was not decisive at all. You are oblivious to the dangers you put yourself in, just like birds chirping happily and not realising that a predator is about to pounce on them. In your case this is uncertainty, instability and insecurity – a really big predator (I know it from experience). I can only say good luck saving yourselves!

    • Paul X

      “Unfortunately, you rely only on empty optimism that has no base in the present reality”
      Maia, conversely, you are full of “empty pessimism that has no base in the present reality”
      I live in the UK and I’m optimistic about our long term future, so what is your motivation for coming on here and trying to generate a climate of doom and gloom?

      Are you aware of a UK TV program called “Dads Army”? …go look it up and in particular the character “Private Frazer”, his attitude is very reminiscent of several people on here… :-)

    • Maia Alexandrova

      Paul, I would say I am a realist. My basis is that UK cannot control the decisions that EU and others take, so it is just an empty optimism to insist that everyone will agree to what UK wants – cherry picking the rules. This is out of question and is not going to happen, so I don’t know what your optimism rests on. My purpose is to tell you that Brexit is a mistake, but whoever lacks wisdom in the end receives it through personal experience and hardship. It seems the British people who voted against EU have lived an easy life for too long, so now they are crying for difficulties and problems that other countries are too familiar with, such as poverty, for example (the road to hell is paved with good intentions and highest optimism. Reality is what happens while you are making plans for the future). If this mistake cannot be prevented, then it will serve as a hard-learned lesson to all. It is then that you will understand my ground. I know what poverty and lack of security means and instinctively don’t want others to go through the same suffering, especially when it can be avoided. On the other hand, the unjustified and hostile view that many of you have of Europeans provokes my hostility towards you, too. There are some very aggressive British people here who think that blurting out insults and hate speech towards us, Eastern Europeans, is perfectly acceptable. They are so very wrong!

    • Yasmine

      This hatred and the spiteful/racist comments are happening with the page’s consent. Perhaps exactly because it wants to prove that it exists.

      On the other hand I asked lovely Tarquin if he has already picked his own destination, as per his own post, but this has not been published…I already know that this page will not be winning an award for freedom of speech next year…

    • Yasmine

      Correction! My comment has actually been published! I would like to congratulate this page for its improvement in its commitment to democratic values.

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      How dare you!

      Please refrain from making BEAUTYIST comments as it lowers the tone of the forum!


  60. Yasmine

    The question says “survive” and not “thrive” so it is actually an answer in itself. At some point in time, of course, the UK could thrive again but how long it will take and how much the people are going to suffer with job losses and higher prices…is it really worth it? I don’t think so.

    • Paul X

      Agreed Yasmine, it’s a big risk, and while you don’t think is worth it, millions in the UK clearly do. There is after all the counter argument that the UK economy is actually being held back by being a member of EU and the fact we were outstripping the rest of Europe whilst being outside the Eurozone could be seen to back this up?

      Who knows, only time will tell, at the moment the only impact on the UK is the falling pound which is bringing higher prices but this nothing to do with the economy but purely down to financial speculators who hate uncertainty…and UK unemployment has not increased at all since Brexit and to say it will is pure speculation

    • Yasmine

      Paul, your arguments are wrong, but I don’t want to get into the details of that.

      Just this: “Agreed Yasmine, it’s a big risk, and while you don’t think is worth it, millions in the UK clearly do.”…

      No, they don’t. The referendum question went something like “Do you want the UK to stay in the EU?”. It didn’t say anywhere are you willing for your shopping bill to go up by 10% for the sake of this? Are you ok to put 70K FS jobs at risk? Are you happy to pay more for your holiday to Spain and apply for a visa in order to ride on the Eurostar? Most people do not understand basic concepts of politics, law or finance and even if they did, nobody gave them the facts. Quite the opposite, they were lied to.

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      IF it gets really bad in the UK, we can always ‘encourage’ EU-foreigners to reconnect with their origins – all 3.6 million of them c12% of the UK workforce .

      Problem solved – SIMPLES!

    • Paul X

      Yasmine, my “argument” cannot be wrong because I’m not arguing, I’m stating facts, the pound has dropped due to currency speculation and UK unemployment has not increased post the referendum

      Whereas you are throwing out totally unfounded statistics with no basis in fact, e.g 70K jobs at risk? Visa’s? etc, nobody yet knows what the outcome is going to be whether negative or positive, and that includes you…

      ….and the fact you clearly consider yourself intellectually superior to 17 million people in the UK “who do not understand basic concepts of politics, law or finance” is laughable beyond belief…if you had actually been here during the referendum campaign (instead of just swallowing all the Right wing rhetoric) you’d have noticed there were lies on both sides but the majority of the UK population were intelligent enough to ignore them

    • Maia Alexandrova

      Tarquin Farquhar, don’t worry, they have already started to “reconnect”, so by the time it gets so bad, most will be gone. The question is where are you going to run to? In the meantime, it might be useful to convert your pounds into euros or dollars soon because on the day Article 50 is triggered, the value of the British currency will fall even more and the roller coaster you are riding will start to accelerate…

    • Yasmine

      It seems to me that the opposite is happening.. your claim that the average Briton or citizen of any country is an expert in law, finance, political science etc is laughable. And how can you prove it? By your own posts?

      The referendum question was clear and so were the answers. Other claims are made up.

      So Tarquin, are packed up and ready to jet off to Ireland, Nigeria, somewhere else? What is your choice of destination?

    • Paul X

      Lol Yasmine, and you accuse me of twisting things…

      Me disagreeing with your statement:
      “Most people do not understand basic concepts of politics, law or finance”

      Is not quite the same as:
      ” your claim that the average Briton or citizen of any country is an expert in law, finance, political science”

      Guess what…. there is something in between the two, and that is where I would include myself and millions of other intelligent people in the UK

    • Yasmine

      Hi Paul, here is a breakdown of the people who voted for Brexit by educational level.

      So, I am afraid, it is a fact that it was primarily people of lower educational levels that voted Leave ad the expertise you are trying to assign to them does not correspond to reality…

      And here is the article about the City jobs at risk:

    • Paul X

      Yasmine it really is time you stopped misquoting, I have never used the word “expertise”
      Based on your link it is only the degree qualified who majority voted to remain but having a degree is no guarantee of political awareness any more than not having on means political ignorance. Your pigeonholing of the UK public into those who voted Brexit are uneducated while those who voted remain are of far superior intellect is becoming quite offensive

      And your link is over a month old, look I found a more recent one…

    • Tarquin Farquhar

      …or the question could be contextually biased reflecting the pro-EU stance of this EU-sponsored forum?

    • Yasmine

      Paul, I have posted the data and I don’t feel that I need to explain anything further. Obviously, in your refusal to accept the results of the survery and the fact that yourself falls into this category, you try to assign the statistics as being subject to my opinion. Need I comment further….University education does have to do with political awareness. The number one thing that you get taught at Uni is to think for yourself and form your own opinion. Because this is what you have to do in exams and when you write in papers. You have to exhibit Your own ideas. So it is very difficult to be manipulated. In addition, you also get given a list of rhetoric fallacies to avoid using in papers because they do not make sense and you would not pass. It is exactly those fallacies that politicians use in their speeches and you do the same in most of your comments. You spin things. Someone who has gone through higher education can see through this. Someone who hasn’t, will be convinced by the well-sounding but totally irrational argument. Those who have knowledge have the power as well. It’s how it works.

    • Paul X

      Yasmine, I hate to proverbially “p1ss on your strawberries” but I have an Engineering Degree, and strangely enough, one thing that was not on the curriculum was Politics……but then again, it is not me who is claiming to be a political expert on a country I do not even reside in

    • Yasmine

      Well, Paul, the curriculum in engineering must be different to that in Humanities. But more and more people take Humanities at Uni. When you talk about statistics though, you talk about majority and most likely, not “everyone”. If you feel that you degree was irrelevant to what is being debated here, all the more why you should be a bit more modest. Or abstain from the debate altogether.

    • Paul X

      Abstain?….but surely you’d miss me? ;-)

  61. kevin

    The EU is a construct to support international corporations and will do whats best for them ,a trade war wont be . We can therefore assume the leave campaign was right and a free trade deal will be arranged . Lets just hope we can do it quicker than the one with Canada

  62. SD

    Britain is 64million people and of that England alone is 54million, I have been to London many times, I see all the European cars, the retail products etc., there is no way that the mainland Industrialists will allow the mainland politicians to do anything to impede their business.

  63. Stefano Nasini

    The “survival” is a biological concept. Britain is a country, a society, an economic system. What does the survival of a country mean? The metaphoric language is so misleading when applied to economic and social sciences!

    • Adam Bxcz

      Farage has retired. If ever wasnt he is sure useless now to anyone

  64. Mike Chambers

    Of course Britain can survive outside of the EU. The question is : can it prosper outside of Europe.

    • João Machado

      Well said! And if it was a nanny it would be a very abusive one, one you should fire and report to the police

    • Adam Bxcz

      João Machado sure, if you have a victim complex

    • Steve Pock

      No its not a nanny but it has been a money sulking cesspit for us ,sooner we leave the better.

    • Adam Bxcz

      Its funny because the more country pays to the eu the more it receives from the eu. I actually know alot about eu funding programs and what was bought for it in my country

    • Paul X

      “Its funny because the more country pays to the eu the more it receives from the eu.”

      That is only true in relative terms…….what is not relative is the fact that the minority of net contributing countries never get back more than they put in

    • Yasmine

      We debated this before, Paul, and we came to the conclusion that it is not possible to calculate the benefits of EU membership to an economy and therefore these numbers that you go on about are a pointless argument. It’s just UKIP propaganda meant to appeal to the more simple-minded and manipulate the vote. That’s why referenda could never work.

    • Paul X

      Exactly Yasmine, it is not possible to calculate therefore it is not possible to prove if there even is any net benefits.
      But what we do know is the financial cost of being in the EU and the financial returns we get, this is measurable and verifiable data which I suppose to those who don’t like hearing the truth could be considered propaganda

    • Michal Majtan

      Norway is part of single market, it contribute to EU budget and follow our directives and most of our legislation. England wants only common market but for free. That is unacceptable

    • Akos Tarkanyi

      And does it survive because it contributes to the EU budget? And what about Switzerland?

    • Péter Sebők

      Switzerland is in the single market. It’s not a member state, doesn’t vote but the european law applies. Norway is the same

    • Akos Tarkanyi

      Michal Majtan “most of our legislation” And some of it not. And they can decide about is.

  65. Bobi Dochev

    Yes it can. The single market is not panacea for economic growth. It might be vice versa, they can take the control and protect their workers.

  66. Yannick Herve

    Est-ce que Debating Europe peut survivre sans Soros et sans l’appui de la propagande officielle ?

  67. Hector Niehues-Jeuffroy

    Yes, Britain can survive outside the Single Market. You might be surprised to hear so, but that is actually what it has done for many centuries before the Single Market was created. The real question is whether it will be better or worse off once it has left (if it leaves).

  68. Manuel Alegria

    Brexit only proves EU are weak and puppets…
    If EU had some political stenght, UK would have beens kicked out already

  69. Bobi Dochev

    Yeap! It can! Not only can but probably they left the sinking ship just on time.

  70. Jean-Pierre Rosa

    As an irrelevant economy forced to flex military muscles in order to remain relevant in the world stage.

  71. Jude De Froissard

    The E.U. is under german occupation…..politically and economically with the eurogroup as partners…..

  72. Carmelo A. Costanza

    Reality will materialize and set in. One can’t benefit and cherry pick from the spoils and benefits of the EU and play by different rules; you can’t have it both ways. You’re either in or out. No scapegoating; you don’t leave an organization, you reform it! Should Brexit prevail, EU laws and regulations would indirectly and continue to apply by being incorporated in UK national laws should the UK choose to access the EU free market.

  73. Wendy Harris

    It will happen. If Theresa May does not achieve it then Farage will on the day after the next General Election when he is elected Prime Minister. She has 3 years maximum.

  74. Julia Hadjikyriacou

    Britain’s government doesn’t care what happens to the majority of its citizens, not even the vulnerable ones as long as the rich are still making more and more profits. So their government won’t care hard or soft. They don’t care who makes their products and who buys their products as long as they have customers, huge profits and low costs. That is what happens when governments put profits before people.

  75. Dino Boy Mican

    Britain has its commonwealth which it can lever to its own benefit. Trump will also give a helping hand. London – Britain ‘s biggest asset

  76. Wendy Harris

    Britain survived without the Euro and will survive without the EU. Those who wish us well shall remain our friends. Those who wish us ill shall become our enemies. It is surely better to be friends than enemies.

    • Louis Jeffs

      Breathtakingly untrue, but who knows what the future holds?

  77. Bobi Dochev

    Most probably yes, and i wouldn’t be surprised if they are much better outside the euro-bureaucracy!

    • Malcolm Healey

      Wow, for something you’re so against, you spend an awful lot of time trawling on feeds generally in support of the EU, or discussing how to improve it.
      (Note, just saying disband it, or only go back to trading is not improving it)

    • Bobi Dochev

      Malcolm, unfortunately you are typical eurocrat :( You won’t get it and won’t admit what is wrong no mater what. People like you (with boundless trust to EU political establishment) are too arrogant to get anything different then the “right political line” draw by their beloved “leaders”. People like you will never admit that we have wrong policy and it is a problem for more and more Europeans… back in the communism days we called people like you nomenclature… but hey EC is the same like the Central Committee of the Comunist party so it is normal – right ;)
      I don’t believe anybody is against the idea of the Union – people are against current fake Union and current polices – when your leaders get that, then maybe they will stop ruing it!

    • Malcolm Healey

      Bobi Dochev
      Soooo, given the opportunity to actually present a case on how to improve it (excluding two obvious wrong examples), you take the chance to resort to ad hominems? How quaint.

      So try and answer these simple questions then:
      What is “the EU political establishment”?
      Why am I arrogant?
      Why do you assume I cannot be against certain policies, just because they are “European”?
      Why must you make the comparison to communism without qualifying the similarities?
      Why is the current Union “fake”?
      Which “current policies” are so wrong?
      Who are “my leaders”?

      I await in anticipation.

    • Bobi Dochev

      You don’t need the answers of someone like me that ” trawling on feeds”, you are cleverer, you can find the answers by yourself. It would be great exercise for self-knowledge.
      Yet, a eurocrate knows all answers he won’t need a “populist’s” answers – right!

    • Malcolm Healey

      Bobi Dochev
      Ah the standard:
      “Do your own research to find my answers for me” defence. Cute, but worthless in contributing anything of value.

      Sooo, no answers to any kind of questions when asked? No surprise there then, though I thought I should give you the chance. It’s clear you’ve done the research, you just don’t want to share apparently.

    • Bobi Dochev

      Yeap, I did. Use you brain, you are cleaver then me anyway.

    • Bobi Dochev

      And because I don’t like somebody blame me for refusing a “fight ” I’ll be populist to the end and quote even bigger populist

      “Mr Trump told Mr Gove: “You look at the European Union and it’s Germany. Basically a vehicle for Germany. That’s why I thought the UK was so smart in getting out.”

      “I believe others will leave. I do think keeping it together is not going to be as easy as a lot of people think. And I think this, if refugees keep pouring into different parts of Europe . . . it’s going to be very hard to keep it together because people are angry about it.” he said…

      You can get the idea. But really find the similarity between EU “management and the Central Committee just by yourself.
      Long live the populism :)
      Bye Bye :)

    • Malcolm Healey

      “Use your brain” to do what exactly? Because I don’t agree with you I am supposedly not using my brain? How very belittling of you sir.

      So you quote a guy who is becoming renowned for back-tracking on his promises, revealing his lies and hiding from the press as he doesn’t like scrutiny on what he says as an example? Hmmm perhaps you are more clever than you think, especially from you drawing a parallel to someone who dare not reveal where they get what info from and just hide behind vague statements…

    • Bobi Dochev

      We agreed I’m a populist, right? Then what else to expect except relying on a liars toughs :)

    • Malcolm Healey

      Bobi Dochev
      Well, you’re the only one who brought up the word populism here. If that’s how you self-identify, good for you I guess?

    • Bobi Dochev

      O, no, Malcolm, it is the official EU statement! People like me are populist – they said! If somebody dare to have different opinion then the “Central Committee” he is nothing else then populist.

    • Malcolm Healey

      “Official EU statement”? Published where?

      Which central committee?

  78. Julia Hadjikyriacou

    With their huge network of tax havens and trade deals with deregulated countries that also exploit labour? I would say yes. But the vulnerable people of the UK will suffer more though-not that the establishment cares as long as the rich are taken care of.

    • Julia Hadjikyriacou

      The EU is under the same elite-serving system-minus the huge network of tax havens. However the vulnerable people are taken care of better. But the EU still needs reforming. The UK cannot be reformed as they are the ‘gang leaders’.

    • Julia Hadjikyriacou

      Another difference is the UK doesnt much need its citizens, just rich tax evaders, the stock exchange casino central and bankers. Maybe just to make privatised health, schools, prisons police for profits for some mates. But the EU needs its citizens as buyers for trade to flourish. I dont know if they plan to follow Britain’s privatisation plan in the future, but for now countries are not under their complete control.

    • Julia Hadjikyriacou

      Also be mindful of that sneaky financial plan both the EU, Britain, US follow to obtain all the world assets, including many people’s homes so they can rent out property to people on a (future) GMI, all paid by workers tax money and another way to siphon money away from public funds to the already rich.

    • Malcolm Healey

      Ivan Burrows
      So tell me, did anything ever come about from Barrosso taking on a completely legal job, after waiting out the obligated deadline?

  79. João Machado

    It will most probably thrive! But it also depends on how stubborn the EU fanatics will be when agreeing the terms of the trade pact that will have to be established..

    • Malcolm Healey

      I love the well-reasoned argumentation you bring to bear on why.

      For example, what its trading position will be, how it will be making up for the added costs to trade with its existing partners (as all will default to WTO status pending “new” trade deals), the availability of goods and services, the potential job mutations in certain sectors and the state of the agriculture sector…

      Oh wait… No, you addressed no points and went with a gut feeling.

      Never mind then.

    • João Machado

      Don’t forget to balance those potential losses with all the economic benefits of being sovereign, to be able to make your own trade deals across the globe, not to be enclosed in an economic prison, attached to failed currency, in a political project that is in a short countdown to be finished. There are countries inside the European continent that are not a part of the EU and they can still access the single market virtually with the same conditions of member states. My gut tells me that the UK can achieve the same or even better, again, depending on how stubborn EU leaders want to be. In any case, there’s a whole world of economic possibilities for the UK to thrive, as soon as they get out of the current economic prison. Better? No? Let’s just let time roll and see what really happens then..

    • Malcolm Healey

      João Machado
      Economic trade deals, made from a far lessened negotiating position, with other nations knowing fully well that the UK is desperate for trade deals, has too few staff and has to wait until negotiations with the EU are done. Not starting out too well, also that’s just a potential benefit, on the hope that the deals are indeed better, no guarantee they will be.

      If you honestly say “with virtually same conditions of member states” the conversation stops there as you have no clue what you’re talking about, based solely on the different agreements, with different countries pertaining to different sectors, under different conditions.

      Why would the UK get the same or better access to the club without being part of the club? That defeats the entire purpose of the club and isn’t very logical, especially since the UK chose to leave.

      If you’re talking about time, you mean first and foremost 2 years of negotiating just on getting out of the EU. Then a potential 5-10 years on establishing a new deal with the EU. Then after that period most other countries will be setting up trade deals with the UK, as their position/relation to the EU and therefore the wider world will be better known. Do you understand yet? You’re talking about waiting a long time to comment, while making the initial comment of your belief on nothing.

    • João Machado

      Iceland, a nation of 332.000 people, managed to have a trade deal with China. Something the the EU, the big powerful block, still could not achieve. Talking about negating position..
      Anyway, I have no desire to discuss hypotheticals with you. I guess you’re from the UK. Your peers have voted. The majority wants to be free. Respect their wishes. And time will tell. You want the UK to stay in a sinking ship, at the end of the day that’s where we fundamentally disagree. The EU is over… Staying away from it is the best thing you can do. 2017 will bring you a lot of surprises mate, stay tuned for Nexit, Frexit, and others to come.

    • Malcolm Healey

      I respect their wishes, funny how you posit that I don’t because I disagree with you.

      I am of the opinion that it needs to be made clear how uncertain the situation is, and how it is not on (false) hope in spite of reality.

      The EU is far from over, though it would be interesting to hear why you think it is.

      Nexit is impossible, though I will assume you don’t know Dutch constitutional law. Nor French as French membership is actually in their constitution…

      Why no desire to discuss hypotheticals? You are commenting on a debate page… Could it be you base your position on hope/wild prediction rather than reasoned thinking and economic expertise?

    • Malcolm Healey

      João Machado
      And to add context to your “Iceland trade deal”
      Iceland on Monday (15 April, 2013) became the first European country to sign a free trade agreement with China after six years of negotiations.

      The agreement will remove tariffs on most goods.
      – So not services…

      At €10.7 billion, the tiny Nordic country’s GDP is dwarfed when compared to China’s €5.3 trillion.

      Trade between the two is relatively small.

      Iceland shipped mostly fish last year worth some €47,6 million to the Chinese mainland and imported some €264 million in goods and services.

      China is now Iceland’s fourth biggest importing country and the biggest trading partner in Asia. The deal could see an additional boost to the trade figures as Iceland continues to recover from a banking sector that collapsed in 2008 and saw its economy in ruins.

      -Wow, so it’s almost as if Iceland were desperate for the deal, which they needed when the economy was in bad shape and still took 6 years to achieve…
      But hey, wouldn’t want context to devalue your example right?

    • João Machado

      You speak as if the EU is undeniably permanent and unchangeable. It’s not. Constitutions can be changed. And knowing how difficult that could be for Le Pen (if she’s elected, which might just happen this spring), I wouldn’t be surprised if she attempted the same that President Charles de Gaulle accomplished in 1962, when he proposed an electoral reform that was backed by the public and became law, bypassing the existing regulations to make constitutional changes. Constitutionally illegal? Maybe. Democratic? You tell me. If a majority of Dutch or/and French decide to leave the union, telling me that that’s impossible is the same as telling me that you put laws/constitutions/regulations above the people’s will itself. I don’t think that’s the kind of democracy the Dutch and French will let themselves be subject to. In the end, the people will get what they want, no matter what the artificialities of law and regulation dictate. It’s just a matter of how peacefully the goal will be achieved.

      Believing this is happening already (the first steps were already taken) leads me to conclude that the EU will soon cease to exist under it’s current form simply because a union cannot exist without any members. Mediterranean countries have already been economically wiped out, many are starting to express the desire to leave, central European countries are being very vocal about it (only 3 years ago I would be the first one to say that France would stick until the end, playing the symphony for the guests that didn’t make it out, and how wrong I was!), and the ones that are just arriving will get the message sooner than later.

      It could have taken Iceland 10 years! They still got it. The EU didn’t. And it has been around for quite some time now..

      We fundamentally disagree and that’s nothing but healthy. Lets see what the (near) future holds for us all. Take care Malcolm.

    • Malcolm Healey

      Sp you’re advocating mob rule and the undermining of the entirety of the construction of the socio-political structures (independent judiciary, separation of powers). Well you started on a high already. People can also want “free healthcare” without being told how they will get it/pay for it. Just wanting something with a blatant lack of information is bad as you demonstrate. Hinting towards non-peaceful resolution… That’s just shocking.

      So now you use weasel words without qualification: “many” “desire to leave” “very vocal” easy to suggest a point without providing proof…

      Well the comparison is still rather odd as the EU trades far more with china in spite of not having such “preferential terms”. Even then the question should be posed when the EU actually reaches a deal whether it was “as good” as Iceland’s. The absence of a deal may even suggest it is not necessary… Then again logical reasoning…

      See that’s the thing, we can disagree but I am trying to understand what you build your motivations and beliefs on, yet you divert, distract and do anything to not address any points. Sticking to vague beliefs and suggestions and feelings, rather than the numbers, experts and such…

      Take care, though I do wish you would read up on topics when you preach on things your posts suggest you don’t know much about…

    • João Machado

      You win I loose, take care mate

    • Malcolm Healey

      Except its not about winning or losing. Its about building mutual understanding and working together for a future to the betterment of us all.

      Not suggesting non-peaceful/violent overturning of the rule of law, because a mob comes to a certain opinion. Interesting you cite the French as an example, as they have had several instances in their political history of violent political revolt, to know better than following simple populism.

      Take care, but please don’t suggest violence is the answer to get what you want, within a political system you don’t agree with.

    • João Machado

      I said the will of the majority of the people, not a small mob and a fringe idea, I didn’t suggest violence, stop putting words in my mouth and inferring too much to help your arguments. In a society made of people there’s nothing wrong with populism, only the way lamestream media use the term. And yes! France had amazing instances in history of democracy made by the people for the people, the anti-democratic EU should learn a thing or two from them.
      I’ve explained myself, I exposed my arguments, my wishes for the people of Europe, my understanding of what’s going on, I listened to you and even learn a thing or two. But It’s obvious that that’s not enough for you and honestly I’m not interested anymore, so good luck with your struggle there mate, see you around!

    • Marian Rodu

      Based on what? EU is your biggest trading partner. You barely have any factories left and your financial hegemony is chiefly due to your position in the EU. Plus you’ll have to survive first, if Scotland and Ireland don’t want their own little exits.

  80. Ivan Burrows


    Can the other 169 Nation on earth survive without being the EU ?, obviously we can.

    • Marian Rodu

      Yes, be as important as Moldova.

    • Malcolm Healey

      Ivan Burrows
      Hmmmmm, “all these countries want trade deals with the UK”, no quotes provided on the content of what the deals are…
      “Failing Eurozone project” provides no explanation thereof… Except half the rate of growth of the UK apparently being a qualifier. Still growing, but not as much as UK means a failure… Sure

      “Only two of the world’s top 10 economies – Italy and France, which are both on the verge of major financial crises – have yet to express an interest in doing a trade deal with Britain.”
      Because they are part of the EU and don’t do individual deals, but deal as part of the EU.

      These are just some reasons why people laugh at the Express as part of the gutter press…

    • Malcolm Healey

      That is a good one…
      What would you propose?

  81. Joel Dominic Rodrigues

    A question to ask is, “Does anyone outside the UK care if Britain survives outside the EU?” That might provide more food for thought.

    • João Machado

      I care. It will be a great case study for all the other brexits waiting to happen across the EU. Not that those will wait for these results, but still valid information.

    • Joel Dominic Rodrigues

      “Other brexits waiting to happen”? This ridiculous, clueless, deluded, xenophobic UK government have failed to follow through on this one for months now. I think you may have missed the point of my comment though.

  82. Malcolm Healey

    João Machado
    Economic trade deals, made from a far lessened negotiating position, with other nations knowing fully well that the UK is desperate for trade deals, has too few staff and has to wait until negotiations with the EU are done. Not starting out too well, also that’s just a potential benefit, on the hope that the deals are indeed better, no guarantee they will be.

    If you honestly say “with virtually same conditions of member states” the conversation stops there as you have no clue what you’re talking about, based solely on the different agreements, with different countries pertaining to different sectors, under different conditions.

    Why would the UK get the same or better access to the club without being part of the club? That defeats the entire purpose of the club and isn’t very logical, especially since the UK chose to leave.

    If you’re talking about time, you mean first and foremost 2 years of negotiating just on getting out of the EU. Then a potential 5-10 years on establishing a new deal with the EU. Then after that period most other countries will be setting up trade deals with the UK, as their position/relation to the EU and therefore the wider world will be better known. Do you understand yet? You’re talking about waiting a long time to comment, while making the initial comment of your belief on nothing.

  83. Bobi Dochev

    And because I don’t like somebody blame me for refusing a “fight ” I’ll be populist to the end and quote even bigger populist

    “Mr Trump told Mr Gove: “You look at the European Union and it’s Germany. Basically a vehicle for Germany. That’s why I thought the UK was so smart in getting out.”

    “I believe others will leave. I do think keeping it together is not going to be as easy as a lot of people think. And I think this, if refugees keep pouring into different parts of Europe . . . it’s going to be very hard to keep it together because people are angry about it.” he said…

    You can get the idea. But really find the similarity between EU “management and the Central Committee just by yourself.
    Long live the populism :)
    Bye Bye :)

  84. Louis Jeffs

    In the same way I could do a wheelie on my bike. It would be interesting, but I probably shouldn’t try it.

  85. João Roque

    Sure, like Switzerland does. It can even be a prosperous nation, but it won’t have any political weight in the world stage and will be vulnerable to outside pressures.

  86. Malcolm Healey

    João Machado
    And to add context to your “Iceland trade deal”
    Iceland on Monday (15 April, 2013) became the first European country to sign a free trade agreement with China after six years of negotiations.

    The agreement will remove tariffs on most goods.
    – So not services…

    At €10.7 billion, the tiny Nordic country’s GDP is dwarfed when compared to China’s €5.3 trillion.

    Trade between the two is relatively small.

    Iceland shipped mostly fish last year worth some €47,6 million to the Chinese mainland and imported some €264 million in goods and services.

    China is now Iceland’s fourth biggest importing country and the biggest trading partner in Asia. The deal could see an additional boost to the trade figures as Iceland continues to recover from a banking sector that collapsed in 2008 and saw its economy in ruins.

    -Wow, so it’s almost as if Iceland were desperate for the deal, which they needed when the economy was in bad shape and still took 6 years to achieve…
    But hey, wouldn’t want context to devalue your example right?

  87. Bogdán Róbert

    Of course they can and they will. Just because they lost appetite for this project in this current form, doesn’t make them less European. Brits are firstly British but furthermore Europeans, that’s a fact, a reality. Same core values, same world view, same historical, cultural, religious heritage. We need a thriving Britain, even if it’s outside the EU. And we need to offer them the best deal that is possible, for our mutual benefit.

  88. Malcolm Healey

    João Machado
    The will of the majority of the people can still be against the law, and a majority can still be a mob.

    You most certainly suggested violence, because of the absence of “peacefulness”: “In the end, the people will get what they want, no matter what the artificialities of law and regulation dictate. It’s just a matter of how peacefully the goal will be achieved.”

    If you are just talking about the majority of people, as opposed to the democratic structures and separation of state, justice and law-making yes populism is very very wrong, as a majority need not know what ramifications their actions have (again, see French historic examples). Exisiting structures are the way they are for a reason, as it is ridiculous to expect everyone to have such far-reaching knowledge of all topics from national fiscal policy to healthcare to military capabilities to technological legislation. Yet your “majority of the populace” argumentation with regards to opinions on topics that bridge those topics and more, without everyone knowing all the relevant details to all included policies is a recipe for disaster.

    France also had some of those same “by the people for the people” turn against the people, leading to repeated bloodshed, violent purges, systematic executions oh and expanding militarisation to the point of war. So much for the good of the people, but people obviously knew that they were voting or revolting to later be slaughtered or sent to war. Denying the abhorrent sides of these populist uprisings is unbecoming of you.

    Yet you haven’t explained your positions, you diverted, distracted and avoided any kind of clarity or evidence. Your wishes you have said a great deal on, yet not how you come to them, or why they would work, with which implementation. So you came with a wishlist, everyone has those.

    Well if you say you listened, yet every time you deny and deflect what I say, that’s just rebuttal. If your interest in the topic is so easily lessened, then apparently the topic wasn’t initially worth the effort for you to actually debate (you just wanted to be listened to), or you’re just afraid to have your opinion questioned. Either way, it’s rather below the level of posting on “Debating Europe” to say, no I’m not interested enough in a topic I started.

  89. Wendy Harris

    What is wrong with populism? It might just be that the people have it right and the establishment have it wrong.

  90. James McManama

    No developed economy in the world trades with the EU purely according to WTO rules. They all, without exception, conduct trade according to a framework of bilateral and multilateral agreements. So, how can we know that “no deal” is really better than a bad deal?

  91. Oliver

    Can I just say that the way this question is phrased means you cannot really answer it accurately. The UK will most likely ‘survive’ outside EU. I know everyone will now start bombarding me with messages about import to export ratios, but many forget that the UK economy is based around services, (e.g. Finance, insurance, tech, entertainment, pharmaceuticals, etc). Also $1 trillion dollars flows through the UK due to this. London is the worlds largest financial centre, and just to place it into context, London’s GDP is the size of Poland, Portugal and Romania combined. Remember that apart from GDP and PPP measurements, the U.K. has the third largest research for medicine and development. Also remember that most major tech companies base in the U.K. E.g. Facebook, amazon, google and apple for their European headquarters. The UKs main import partner is the USA and in addition only 7/15 top countries that the U.K. Trades with are in the EU. Remember when you completely disregard the UK, that UK has invented the internet we are using now, the original computer that the computer you are using now is based off, the cure for many illnesses… Also remind yourself when you watch Star Wars, lord of the rings, Harry Potter, James Bond, where they were filmed (Pinewood studios, UK).

    In conclusion I think that the UK will ‘survive’ outside the EU and that the EU will survive without the UK once they fix their currency and economic policies. The UK will become a new global trading partner, trading with the US, some EU 4 countries (e.g. Germany, Italy, France) and the new emerging economies like China, and the other Asian markets. The world is changing drastically in the way politics is played and for the EU sakes, they will have to learn how to change with it or risk being left behind.

  92. Børge Rahbech Jensen

    Britain has a deficit on trade with the other members of the EU. It doesn’t make sense asking whether an economy can survive without a deficit.

  93. Pedro Castro

    Depends on your definition of “survive”.

    Scotland and n.ireland leaving UK, poor and isolated could be considered a form of survival…

  94. Rosy Forlenza

    yes, but not in a way that would make me want to go back and live there, the ‘cost’ of that survival might be very high.

  95. Ingrida Marčiulaitytė

    Is there such a thing like a soft Brexit? UK is probably going to leave without a deal with the EU…Moreover, UK without a deal probably means UK without Scotland or, even worse, UK without Scotland and N. Ireland in the long term. If UK is going to affect the rights of EU citizens – put restrictions on immigration, it is really unlikely they are going to receive a good deal (it is obviously not acceptable for the EU leaders). So, expect the best but be prepared for the worst simply does not fit here… and that’s a simple logic. Finally, is the 8th of June elections really needed? Does it change the whole picture of the matter? UK citizens who voted to leave the EU almost a year ago are not currently happy – they did not get and is not going to get what they expected of Brexit. I also doubt UK citizens want to see an economically weak Britain without Scotland in the future too. Isn’t this a real reason to organise the second referendum due to the Brexit? I think only UK politicians are the ones who try to avoid the second Brexit referendum because the results could be totally different. They are lazy to organise the second referendum but they are not lazy to organise 8th of June elections…Sad.

    • Jokera Jokerov

      But SNP lost half of its seats, so Independent Scotland is not on the agenda and they were taken by the Conservatives. DUP won more seats, so NI getting out off the UK is not on the agenda too.

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