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Britain has become Europe unexpectedly

THE DREAM Many Brexiteers were obvious.Unleashed from the “corpse” of EUThe UK will break the red tape of Brussels, regain control of immigrants, shift its focus to the fast-growing Asian market and shift from low-wage to high-wage economies. Britain in Europe will be replaced by Britain worldwide.Transactions with EU It will continue freely under the new trade agreement — in fact, the relationship may be even more harmonious.

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More than two years after Britain left the club, the free movement is over, but much of the other vision hasn’t come true.Relationship with EU There are more scratches than ever before. Still, paradoxically, Britain has done so in many ways. EU neighbor.

As a member, it was less regulated than most other rich countries.Increased opt-out from EU Policy more than anyone. Successive governments have kept corporate taxes and national insurance premiums lower than most competitors and reduced medical costs.Within EU The UK mainly avoided state intervention and industrial subsidies, avoiding high minimum wages.And during most of the 1990s and 2000s, the British economy grew faster than that. EU rival.

Under Boris Johnson, there were few regulatory differences from the standards set in Brussels. This is because some companies (or consumers) EU.. Charles Grant, Director of the European Reform Center (CER), Think tanks recall that after Brexit, the UK was seriously afraid to move to a low-tax, low-regulatory version of “Singapore Ontems.” Therefore, they insisted on strong level play. -The situation on the ground in trade transactions. But in reality, there were few signs of such a change.

Certainly, the direction of travel may be quite the opposite.As former Englishman Jonathan Hill EU Commissioners say Britain looks more like the rest of Europe in a wide range of areas, including taxes, public spending and borrowing, state intervention and subsidies, than in David Cameron’s time, not to mention Margaret Thatcher. Johnson obviously likes to spend public money. He calls himself “Brexity Hezza”, citing the example of Michael Heseltine, a Tory minister during the Thatcher era who was enthusiastic about the state’s major role.

The UK tax burden has been set to be the heaviest since the late 1940s. The reaction to covid-19 has swelled and public spending is approaching record levels.National insurance premiums for employees, agents EU Social security costs have risen from 9% in the 1990s to more than 13%. The main corporate tax rate will rise from 19% to 25% next year.Public spending on health care has increased from just over 8% GDP Up to nearly 12% in the early 2000s EU average. In recent years, the minimum wage has been raised significantly. Even the UK demographics look like Europe, as the birth rate plummeted to 1.58. This is just above Germany.

In terms of climate change, Johnson is an avid cheerleader of the Net Zero Target for Carbon Emissions, the first European country Britain has enshrined in law. He claims to be as enthusiastic about nuclear power as France. His promise to improve growth by easing strict planning has helped in the face of voter opposition.Despite Brexit, Britain European social model Than it was under former Prime Minister Tory.

Beware of your backyard

And what about Britain in the world? In last year’s integrated review of UK foreign policy, EUInstead, it focuses on US support for Asia and China. However, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine shows that Europe remains of paramount importance in diplomatic and security policy.

Some observers have worked with European allies in Ukraine to EU..Peter Mandelson, another ex-British EU Commissioner, recent attention CER In a seminar that Ukraine shattered Britain’s illusion that it could turn its back on Europe when it came to security, he added that a new prime minister was needed to accept this clear conclusion.Sir Ivan Rogers, Former Permanent Representative of the United Kingdom EUAlso recently said EU-UK A forum that the Ukrainian War was a “game changer” and created an opportunity to reset relations with Brussels and the capital.

It is clear that there is room to expand a thin trade agreement with. EU Work more closely with foreign and security issues in areas such as mobility and academic and scientific cooperation. But Anand Menon, UK In changing Europe, an academic think tank, we believe that relationships cannot be seriously improved as long as Johnson continues to talk about legislation that allows him to unilaterally revoke the Northern Ireland Protocol. Irish Sea border. Hardline Tory Brexiteers hopes to do this shortly after the results of this week’s Northern Ireland Assembly elections are known.

It would exemplify another British paradox after Brexit.As a member, the UK is all EURule. However, Johnson, who was recently found to be in breach of national law on Covid restrictions, threatened to violate international law by unilaterally rejecting a treaty he signed and ratified just two years ago. are doing.This duplicates some other unified habit EU Country: Sign up for something without the intention of implementing it. ■■

For more information on issues related to Brexit, please visit: Brexit hub

Britain has become Europe unexpectedly

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