Brexit Negotiation

Andrew MacLeod and Donal Blaney agree that there are mutually advantageous opportunities in the negotiation, but believes that the UK should stop assuming that its negotiating position would be the negotiated outcome. Good diplomatic negotiators think more about the other side’s negotiating position and possible strategies. They look to the other side’s strengths and constraints to determine how to get the other side to agree to the outcome our side wants.

Many labour politicians think that Corbyn’s commitment to negotiate a Brexit deal that prioritizes jobs implies membership to the single market. Mere access to the European single market is inferior to “membership” of the single market because if we leave the single market, whatever the level of access is negotiated, working people across Britain will be worse off and revenue to the exchequer will plummet. This would make austerity harder to reverse, for the next labour government.

Oliver Haill observes that Brexit negotiation starts under a confusing light, since none knows the position of the UK government and it is not even clear what UK government there is going to be in a few months. Rumors suggest that tories might get May to concede on parts of the Brexit divorce that are important to the EU but unpopular for UK Brexiteers, allow her take the flak and then drop her for a new Prime Minister who would have a free run at negotiating the trade deal.

John Redwood argues that both the UK and the EU stand to benefit from Brexit. While the UK would be free from a commitment it clearly resents, the EU will be able to pursue its aims without having to drag a reluctant UK along with it. For this reason, the negotiations may be seen not as a zero-sum game but as a cooperative endeavour.

A Golden Decade of Europe?

Natalie Nougayrède observes that Britain leaves precisely when the EU is on the up. Citizens’ support for the EU is on the rise, its economic situation has improved, unemployment is down, growth has returned, populist forces have suffered political defeats, in Austria, the Netherlands, France, Italy and Finland. While many problems remain to be solved, the scenario of a European reawakening shouldn’t be discarded.

From the other side of the Athlantic, the NY Times agrees that while EU leaders are not good at boasting, a new mood is taking hold in Brussels and other European capitals these days, a wind of hope and optimism rarely felt in the last two decades. With the Frexit risk already forgotten, Theresa May’s lost gamble, the loss of prestige of the USA leadership, the European project is on the rise politically and economically.

This Ideas Monitor is by Carlo Burelli and Alexander Damiano Ricci

Photo Credits CC Salvatore Vastano   

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