Saturday, 12 August 2017

The Guardian: Britain must ask for more time to negotiate Brexit

The Guardian: Britain must ask for more time to negotiate Brexit

by Gina Miller

"In view of these challenges, the most logical and practical approach would be to seek an extension of the withdrawal period. This would allow time for meticulous planning to limit the damage of Brexit. It would allow us to start on all the huge tasks that need to be completed before we leave, including establishing new institutions – which would have to be staffed and trained to implement the necessary new UK laws – while adapting other institutions, such as the Border Agency and HM Revenue & Customs, as well as setting up control mechanisms for medicines, chemicals, aviation, nuclear imports and food regulation. New fisheries agreements must be put in place for shared stock management in North Sea and Atlantic waters, new border arrangements between Northern Ireland and Ireland worked out, World Trade Organisation tariff schedules and quotas must be negotiated with 163 countries and new trade measures must replace EU measures protecting UK industry against dumped imports, without which the steel industry in South Wales, for instance, could be wiped out immediately after Brexit. Not to mention the tens of thousands of laws that would have to be repatriated. Quite a to-do list.

The request for more time should be made as soon as possible. The 27 other members would have to approve an extension, but they would be more inclined to agree as it is in everyone’s interests. In any case, the longer the uncertainty over a looming cliff-edge persists, the more UK-based businesses will have to plan to move parts of their operations to mainland Europe. The governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, has noted that uncertainties about the eventual relationship are weighing on businesses. “We all need some level of certainty and confidence that the politicians are not making things up as they go along,” he said."

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