January 19th, 2017


Time to stop the fussing

The waiting is over. Britain is now clearly formulating a road-map towards its divorce with Europe. And that is quite something. Because for a long time there was no clarity about the Brexit: how it would happen, when it would happen, and who would do it. And what the consequences would be. For too long, too many people were having false illusions that the Britons would somehow change their minds. Or that Britain would somehow manage to keep its place in the European market. Well, the EU's response was No. Juncker had said even before the referendum that the UK would have to either take it all or leave it all. That was a warning and a treat: there would be no compromise, "deserting traitors" would not be welcome.

Now we can sense some Schadenfreude in the statements coming from Brussels. Whenever the plunging pound is mentioned, the general mood is that this is deserved punishment for Britain. Perhaps Brussels wants to discipline the other 27 members this way, but in fact it's only giving ammo to more Euro-skepticism, and harming itself economically. For example, it is in the interest of the German exporters to have access to the British market without trade restrictions, because this is a very important market for them. 1/5 of all German cars go to Britain, after all.

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