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Brexit Watch - News and Views

Lidl invests in post-Brexit Britain with a £70m headquarters and 5000 jobs

(16/12/16) Lidl is to create 5,000 jobs in London and invest £70 million in a new UK headquarters in the latest victory for the post-Brexit economy. The German budget supermarket said the jobs are part of plans to open nearly 250 new stores in London as it pushes ahead with a three-year £1.5 billion UK investment plan.

Meanwhile Lloyd's of London expects to hire just a few dozen staff on the Continent after Brexit – despite warning that the vote could force 34,000 jobs overseas. Insiders said the Remain-backing 328-year-old insurance market – a key part of London’s financial scene – would set up a European subsidiary with around 50 employees. They believe this will allow it to maintain access even if the UK reaches no trading deal with the EU and our relationship with Brussels sours. Read the full story in the Daily Mail.

Laura Kuenssberg says source told her the Queen backed Brexit

(26/12/16) The BBC’s political editor, Laura Kuenssberg, has reignited the row over whether the Queen was in favour of Brexit, saying a source told her before the referendum that the monarch made comments supportive of leaving the EU. Nine months after the Sun sparked controversy by publishing a headline, “Queen backs Brexit”, in March, Kuenssberg recalled what a contact had told her. Read the full story in the Guardian.

'Clean Brexit' could save UK £450m a week, claims pro-leave group

(27/12/16) A pressure group backed by a string of former Vote Leave campaigners from Michael Gove to Gisela Stuart has claimed that exiting the EU with a “clean Brexit” could save the country £450m a week. During the referendum campaign, Vote Leave controversially argued that leaving the EU would leave an extra £350m a week to spend on the NHS. But research from Change Britain goes a step further by arguing that a complete break with the EU could be even more beneficial. Read the full article in the Guardian.

French town to get 'Brexit street' to pay 'tribute to the sovereign British people' says Front National mayor

(27/12/16) A French town is to christen one of its streets "rue du Brexit" in a move its far-Right Front National mayor says is to "pay tribute to the sovereign British people" who chose to leave the European Union. Read the full story in the Telegraph.

UK moves up 'best for business' list #despiteBrexit fears

The UK has moved up the list of the best countries in the world to do business - despite wider fears over how Brexit could hit trade and slow economic growth. It climbed from tenth to fifth in the annual chart published by US publication Forbes. Read the full article on Sky News.

All I want for Christmas is... an ultra-hard Brexit (and nine other pro-growth policy wishes)

Graeme Leach is chief executive and chief economist of macronomics, a macroeconomic, geopolitical and future megatrends research consultancy.

Here is my Christmas wish list for Santa. Ten policy measures which, if implemented, would make future growth prospects truly joyous, with Christmas every day of the week.

But these are also economic policy measures Santa won’t be too familiar with, as he boards his sleigh somewhere north of the Nordic economies. I don’t pretend these are politically possible today, I merely suggest them as a way to substantially improve prosperity in the long term. Read the full article in City A.M.

Opinion: 3 reasons the pound will roar back once the U.K. finally Brexits

(14/12/16) In the immediate aftermath of the U.K.’s decision to leave the European Union, sterling GBPUSD, -0.0485% crashed to close to record lows. For a few months, it looked as if every hedge fund in the world was shorting the pound for fun — and making a killing by doing so.

But quietly, the pound has staged a modest recovery over the past few weeks. It has recovered almost half its losses against the euro GBPEUR, -0.2519% and clawed back a chunk of the ground against the dollar. Heading into 2017, that is likely to continue. Why? Because the British economy has held up surprisingly well. Because the euro is heading for a fresh crisis. And because even the dollar may not maintain its strength. Read the full article on Marketwatch

Britain’s services trade can flourish outside the EU Single Market

(15/12/16) Negotiating sensible agreements on services trade with the EU, WTO and third countries may not be as difficult as many are suggesting. There are a number of options negotiators can pursue which would go beyond the existing arrangements and further liberalise services trade to Britain’s economic advantage. Read the full article in City A.M.

Brexit blockers: Secret Labour plot to reverse Brexit is revealed and ex-Tory cabinet minister launches the first official campaign to reject the EU referendum result outright

(18/12/16) Renewed efforts to block Brexit were revealed today after a senior Labour MEP was accused of secretly trying to reverse the result and an ex-Tory Cabinet minister returned to frontline politics to join the fight to keep Britain in the EU. Richard Corbett, Labour's deputy leader in Brussels, was found changing key lines in European Parliament documents. The MEP tried to water down the significance of June's referendum result by seeking to amend a European Parliament motion.

Meanwhile Stephen Dorrell, the former health secretary who was appointed the chairman of the European Movement campaign group, announced he will create the first official campaign that calls for the June referendum result to be rejected. Read the full article in the Mail on Sunday.

Prime Minister snubbed by EU at sausage party of smugness

(16/12/16) You can write the script for how this one plays out. At the EU meeting the UK’s Prime Minister was filmed being excluded with no-one talking to her as the leaders did their usual awkward mingling before embarking on several hours of self-regarding and not very effective EU wittering. Satirical shows will run the video. She will be dubbed Theresa Nomaytes (geddit?) and it you are a member of the liberal metropolitan elite ?party in London then this vindicates your view that Britain has voted to cut itself off from civilisation.

It’s a funny video, although not in the way May’s opponents might think.? Read the full article on Reaction.

Carswell lauds Gina Miller’s Pro-EU efforts, says Britain doesn’t need ‘Nigel Farage’s Brexit’

(14/12/16) Former Conservative Member of Parliament Douglas Carswell, who just three weeks ago hinted at a possible return to the Tory party, used his position as a UKIP MP last night to advocate so-called soft Brexit.

Speaking at an event hosted by the left-wing Guardian newspaper on Tuesday night, Mr. Carswell told the audience Brexit “does not mean Nigel Farage’s vision of Brexit” and said he wanted a “new national consensus”. Read the full article on Breitbart.

Holdout Remainers’ “delay and pray” strategy is wishing the UK economic harm

(14/12/16) The strategy is perfectly clear. In fact, it has even been written down and elucidated on broadcast media for us. Jolyon Maugham QC (who is seeking to bring a case in the Irish courts questioning the revocability of triggering Article 50) and other hold-out Remainers are now looking to prevent Brexit by making Britain’s negotiating position as weak as possible. They are actively willing economic hardship to overturn the referendum result. Read the full article in City A.M..

Immigration WAS the key issue for Brexiteers in the historic EU referendum battle, according to huge analysis of social media comments

(12/12/16) Immigration was the key issue for Brexiteers in the historic EU referendum battle, according to a huge analysis of social media. A groundbreaking study of nearly three million tweets by a team at the University of Sheffield shows control of borders came up far more than sovereignty or the NHS. It was mentioned 66,000 times by Leave supporters between June and November - with the overwhelming majority of the references coming before the vote on June 23. By contrast Remain backers talked about the issue just 40,000 times.

The analysis emerged as a poll increased pressure on Theresa May by suggesting Leave voters will not tolerate losing out financially. Research by YouGov for the Open Britain campaign group found 51 per cent are not willing to be left a penny worse off as a result of cutting ties with Brussels. Read the full story in the Daily Mail.

Right-wing historian, Niall Ferguson, delivers 'mea culpa' and says he was mistaken opposing Brexit

(12/12/16) One of Britain’s most influential historians and leading ‘Remain’ celebrity, Niall Ferguson, has performed a major U-turn in his stated position on Britain’s membership of the European Union, telling his fans his opposition to the Brexit vote was a “mistake”. Reflecting on his decision to support then Prime Minister David Cameron and his then Chancellor George Osborne, Mr. Ferguson told the Milken Institute Global conference he was “wrong” to back the Remain campaign, adding: “I’ve had an awakening”. Read the full article on Breibart.

Hard Brexit will breed new bigotry, warns former Tory minister

(10/12/16) Former Education Secretary, Nicky Morgan, in her new role as chair of the moderate Conservative Mainstream group, will say the party is in danger of surrendering the centre ground of politics if the hardline anti-EU right prevails. She has recently locked horns with May by opposing plans to expand the number of grammar schools. She was also the central figure in 'Trousergate' when she accused the Prime Minister of being out of touch for wearing £995 leather trousers, saying that the only time she spent more money on clothing than that was on her wedding dress. She has since been 'uninvited' from a meeting this week between the PM and 'Remoaner' Tory MPs.

Morgan is emerging as one of the most vocal adherents of a “soft Brexit”, which would retain as much access to the single market as possible, even if this means negotiating some continuation of freedom of movement rules. Read the full story on her speech in advance of the Tory conference in Birmingham tomorrow in The Observer.

The town where even immigrants are fed up with migration: Failing schools, filthy streets and benefit fraud

(10/12/16) Page Hall is an area in Sheffield where several cultures had rubbed along happily enough for decades. It has now become, quite literally, a rubbish-strewn dump ever since a sudden influx of thousands of arrivals from mainland Europe.

Most are Roma migrants from Slovakia, attracted by the prospect of a better life thanks to Britain’s generous welfare benefits, free health treatment, housing and schools. The residents will also talk about the local schools trying to cope with a 15-fold increase in non-English-speaking children and about the groups of foreigners who hang around on street corners for hours shouting and spitting. Read more in the Daily Mail.

There is cultural refusal in the UK to believe EU leaders mean what they say about exit terms

(05/12/16) Excellent article from the FT which states the bare reality that the EU means what it says when stating that Britain will get no special deal when leaving the EU. The writer says that we should be realistic when Donald Tusk says the “only real alternative to a hard Brexit is no Brexit”, and that when Angela Merkel says that the four freedoms are non-negotiable, she means it. The message is clear - we must stop thinking that we can negotiate the favourable deals oft mentioned in the media. The EU's message is 'it's our way, or the highway'. Read the full article in the FT.

Don’t sneer at northerners for voting for Brexit – there are sound reasons

(09/12/16) Helen Pidd is the Guardian's north of England editor, based in Manchester. In this rare, balanced article she explains why the north voted for Brexit. She examines why even the majority of Nissan workers voted to leave, even though their ultimate boss said that Nissan would close. The answer is they didn't believe him.

Pidd says that instead of sneering, 'people need to understand why most of the north, apart from some inner cities and a few wealthy rural exceptions, voted to leave. Could it be that they are fed up with receiving crumbs when London and the south-east get whole loaves? Spending on schools, arts, transport infrastructure and so much more is vastly weighted in London’s favour.' Read the full article in The Guardian.

Owner of a shop in Muswell Hill called 'Really British' called racist by bunch of 'bigoted, brain-dead Guardianistas'

(09/12/16) Chris Ostwald claims to be the target of an online campaign aimed at forcing him to change the shop’s name. He’s accused of being ‘pro-Brexit’, as if that’s on a par with paedophilia, and has been hit with a boycott. The store only opened at the end of November, but Chris has already lost one member of staff who resigned after her first day because she was fed up with the abuse. And she’s Spanish. Read the full story in the Daily Mail.

They’re lovin’ it! McDonald’s is moving European base TO the UK from Europe

(08/12/16) Fast food giant McDonald's is moving its European base to the UK in a dramatic vote of confidence in Brexit. The firm is to establish a new holding company in this country where it will pay tax on most of its income outside of the US. The shift comes after the EU launched a probe into the company's tax arrangements at its current base in Luxembourg. Their loss and our gain. Brexit and fries, please! Read the story in the Daily Mail.

The EU and UKIP agree on the Single Market - UKIP's Gerard Batten MEP

(06/12/16) Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, has confirmed what UKIP has been saying all along: to remain in the Single Market we would have to keep open borders and unlimited mass immigration from the EU. Gerard Batten MEP, the UKIP Brexit spokesman responded, “This confirms what the then Prime Minister, David Cameron said in June, “the British public would be voting, if we Leave, to leave the EU and leave the Single Market”. Read the full post on

Brexit will lead to cheaper food if right policies adopted, says OBR

(03/12/16) British households are on course to enjoy cheaper food after Brexit if the UK returns to the system of farming subsidies adopted before joining the European Union, a top official from the Office for Budget Responsibility has claimed. Read the full article in the Telegraph.

Teenager charged with manslaughter - Police no longer classing Harlow Polish man death as 'hate crime'

(01/12/16) A 15-year-old boy has been charged with manslaughter over the death of a Polish man who was attacked in Essex. Arkadiusz Jozwik, 39, was assaulted on 27 August in The Stow, Harlow, and later died in hospital. It was widely-reported at the time in the left-wing, pro-Remain media such as the BBC that this was a 'hate crime' resulting from the Brexit vote. The Police have just announced that they are no longer classing this as a hate crime. Sadly in this article, the BBC have decided not to report this development, presumably because it goes against their narrative that the Brexit vote has encouraged more incidences of hate crime, of which no hard evidence has emerged. Read the full article on BBC 'onlie'.

The judges and the people: Next week, 11 unaccountable individuals will consider a case that could thwart the will of the majority on Brexit

(02/12/16) Excellent article giving the pro-Europe backgrounds of most of the Supreme Court judges who will decide on the Government's appeal over Article 50 next week. Read the full article in the Daily Mail.

UKIP looks for Labour voters - The Economist

(03/12/16) An uncharacteristically non-hostile article on UKIP by The Economist, a verified pro-Remain publication, in the wake of Paul Nuttall's appointment as leader. This piece looks at the opportunity and challenges facing the party ahead. Read the full article in the Economist.

The EU must compromise to win a good Brexit deal for Britain and the rest of the union, warns Polish PM

(28/11/16) The EU must compromise to win a Brexit deal that works for both the UK and the rest of Europe, the Polish Prime Minister warns today ahead of a historic meeting with Theresa May.Ms Szydlo said the result of negotiations will depend on "imagination and leadership" and called on the Prime Minister to set out her Brexit plan soon. Read the full article in the Daily Telegraph.

The pound bounces back as Brexit fears for the economy dissipate - Alex Brummer

(30/11/16) Many of the adverse forecasts for the British economy in 2017 are based around the assumption that the sharp depreciation of the pound will lead to a burst of inflation. In turn it will crush real incomes, spending and output. The odd thing is that, in November, the skittishness of sterling on foreign exchanges has given way to stronger trading. What we have seen in the past month is a gradual strengthening of the pound as concerns about leaving the EU and its impact on the economy have dissipated. Read the full article in the Daily Mail.

You've learned NOTHING from Project Fear: Michael Gove hits out at economists' dire warnings of a £60bn Brexit hit and says their whole industry risks being discredited over hyped fears

(27/11/16) Michael Gove reignited the bitter row over warnings of a £60billion Brexit hit today - accusing economists of failing to learn lessons from the Project Fear debacle. The former Cabinet minister said he believed the Office for Budget Responsibility's gloomy predictions would go the same way as those before the historic referendum vote. And he warned that the whole industry of economic forecasting risked being completely discredited. Read the full article in the Mail on Sunday.

68% of people think that Britain should go ahead with Brexit - YouGov

(17/11/16) 68% of people think that Britain should go ahead with Brexit, unchanged from when YouGov asked the same question in October. People who voted to Remain in June are evenly divided between those who opposed Brexit, but think the government has a duty to implement the decision and leave, and those who would like to see the government ignore or overturn the referendum result. Interestingly, fewer than one in five think the Government is handling Brexit well. Read the full YouGov Brexit briefing.

Tony Blair hunts for Westminster office to set up his new Brexit lobbying group

(20/11/16) Tony Blair is hunting for a Westminster office for his new Brexit lobbying group as he plots his return to politics. The former prime minister believes the Tories are 'screwing up Brexit' and views Jeremy Corbyn is 'a nutter,' an ally said. He thinks there's a 'massive hole in British politics' that he can fill. Mr Blair is setting up a new institute that will seek to influence and advise the Brexit process. The Cambridge & SE Cambs UKIP branch would like to suggest a new name for his lobby group - HUBRIS. Read the article in the Mail on Sunday.
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