179 states trade successfully with the EU with no customs union or single market membership

I am grateful to facts4eu for reminding us of this important truth. You do not have to bind yourself to the EU to trade with the EU. Our industries already have mixed supply chains with components and raw materials from non EU countries getting just fine as well EU product.

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  1. Posted May 22, 2019 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

    Well, yes, and I’m damned sure that the vast majority of the “crash out, no deal, cliff edge” cretins are well aware of that.
    I don’t appreciate being taken for a fool, particularly by scum with their hands in my wallet.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

      What Tiler

      Most users of this site advocate leaving the EU without a deal. I hope you are not calling us all ‘cretins’.

      • Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

        Do you frequently use any of the terms that I attached to the term “cretins”? A WTO exit, which I favour, is none of those things. So I struggle to understand your problem.

        • Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

          Thank you for clarifying. Your earlier post was ambiguous. Yes, most of us are in favour of a WTO Brexit, which, I’m sure, would lead very quickly to a free trade deal with the EU.

        • Posted May 22, 2019 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

          To be fair, I also had to read it more than once as it did at first glance come across like the typical Remoaner twaddle we’re blessed with daily hereabouts…

          Simple misunderstanding. Shake hands and play nice now. 🙂

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

      I agree. That would be the whole of the Green and Liberal parties, the bulk of the Labour party, and a sizable chunk of the Tory party.

      Thank God there are still proper Brexiteers to vote for!

  2. Posted May 22, 2019 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

    So unsuccessful is our trading relationship with the EU that we pay a net £10bn/year to have a trading deficit of £100bn/year.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 3:06 pm | Permalink


      Mrs May obviously did not think this was worth mentioning in her discussions with them.

      Remember she thinks they are our friends !!!

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:21 am | Permalink

        They are Mrs May’s and Olly’s friends. They’re so friendly they want us to be a colony.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

      O.Richard…..and who spotted it and forced a rebate, given what else to do now we were well and truly shafted?

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

      Yes Richard, the UK’s current account deficit is the biggest hidden economic issue facing future governments. As Sir John has often pointed out, they inevitably mean that more and more of UK assets and debt will be owned by others. Many who comment here rail against the 0.7 per cent of GDP devoted to overseas aid but, if I read the ONS figures correctly, our NET payments of (chiefly) profits, interest and dividends to others are already running at twice that rate and growing fast.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 7:07 pm | Permalink


  3. Posted May 22, 2019 at 2:53 pm | Permalink

    This is what the government should have been trumpeting right from the start. We all know the reasons why they did not. Shame on Theresa May and her Cabinet.

  4. Posted May 22, 2019 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    Of course you can trade with the EU without being a member. But you trade with it with much greater ease if you are a member. And there isn’t a single country in the whole wide world which trades with the EU on WTO terms, because those terms are so very basic and so very bad – yet that is what you are proposing: that the UK should have the worst trading conditions of any country on the planet. Stop Brexit now

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 9:52 pm | Permalink

      With a £100bn/year trading deficit with the EU I don’t want our trading relationship to continue as it is now.

      That is why I want the UK to cease to be a member of the EU’s SM/CU so we can introduce policies to reduce this ridiculously enormous and damaging deficit.

      At the same time we can save £10bn/year net, regain our fishing grounds, make our own laws and set our own immigration and foreign policies.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 10:30 pm | Permalink


      Not pointing any fingers….but below is for the international commerce illiterate?

      Jan 2019. Of 135 non-EU members of the World Trade Organisation, 58 currently trade with the EU under negotiated trade terms. The rest (77) trade under WTO terms.

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 12:46 am | Permalink

      Did you not notice that Brexit is not all about trade?

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 10:43 am | Permalink

      Dear Harold,

      I am sure we will get along just fine after we have left. Any one-sided trade relationship will see the vendor make concessions to keep their customer satisfied. Just be patient. With May gone, we will have removed a massive impediment to this nation’s long-term viability.

  5. Posted May 22, 2019 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

    The remainers tell us that the e.u. is our largest trading partner, although actually the e.u probably doesn’t buy anything from us (as all trade is between individuals and businesses) but whenever I buy something it usually seems to have come from China.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:07 pm | Permalink


      Actually, depending on you’re into, there are good american made products on the market. You pay more but the quality is outstanding.

      I have a log burner in the main room, it’s american. Has a catalytic converter, heats the entire house, is very efficient and extremely well made.

      I also have many american made garage tools (to keep an old Jag on the road) they’ll outlast me.

      Swedish tools are pretty good also.

      I never buy ‘Chinese’ when it comes to physical items, and I’ve stopped buying European and Irish foods.

      Consumer’s choice you see.

      • Posted May 22, 2019 at 10:56 pm | Permalink


        Not strictly true. Some Chinese goods are very good, but in practice, you need to pick and chose your supplier?…as in any sound business.

        I also have American (garage tools are excellent as you say), Swedish, Germany, Italian, Dutch goods, etc that are outstanding in value (though a little on the expensive side). Of course, some are not so good value.

        The missing bit in this picture….. the UK used to have its own “British owned” outstanding manufactured goods too.

        I am personally in favour of building up our lost manufacturing industry again. We have the talent, the management and good technical staff…what we don’t have is solid UK Government support, which restricts investment.

        “We” would be keen to address manufacturing in the North of England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. I trust that day will come again with new enlightened Government support?…any thoughts on that happening anytime soon John?

  6. Posted May 22, 2019 at 3:28 pm | Permalink


    “179 states trade successfully with the EU with no customs union or single market membership”

    So could we. Why then did we beg to join the EU all those years ago?

    Because our own attempts to form a trading bloc like EFTA or the commonwealth failed compared the far more successful EU. In fact we caused great hardship to countries like Australia and New Zealand when we ceased trading with them after we joined the EU.

    It should tell you something that of the 7 founding members of EFTA only 2 stayed while all the others defected to the EU.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:09 pm | Permalink

      Because margaret, in it’s original form it was a trading bloc with six member nations and no more.
      We had high hopes for it.
      But it has been hijacked.
      Fast forward today to the EU which is a political construct.
      And soon will be the United States of Europe.

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

        edward2….Never the United S of E! Members yes, but bullied into it, and now too lilly-livered to vote OUT. United is an odd term to describe the infighting that goes on within the EU club, just like the worst stuffy golf club you could imagine (I’m ducking from irate members already).

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:11 pm | Permalink


      “Why then did we beg to join the EU [ EEC surely ?] all those years ago?”

      The answer to that is; we didn’t. We were conned into it.

      Besides I’ve never begged to anyone.

      • Posted May 22, 2019 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

        Well said Steve, you beat me to it!

        When I read the line, ‘Why then did we beg to join the EU all those years ago?’ I wondered who this ‘we’ was? Nobody asked me back in 1972, ‘we’ were steamrollered into it!

      • Posted May 22, 2019 at 10:16 pm | Permalink


        On this day 27 November 1967:

        “De Gaulle says ‘non’ to Britain – again”

        Harold Wilson waited two days before replying to General de Gaulle’s statement.
        He made a 16-point rebuttal of the French leader’s statement and ruled out any offers of associate membership.
        He also said Britain would press ahead with its application for full membership of the Common Market.
        After General de Gaulle fell from power in 1969, Britain applied a third time, and was accepted.


        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 7:43 am | Permalink

          Doesn’t sound like begging to me.

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 8:40 am | Permalink

          But the point you are ignoring the country wasn’t asked, until after the politicians decided it was a good idea and signed up to it.

          The 1975 referendum excluded the information contained in FCO 30 1048, which clearly set out the loss of sovereignty that the people must not be told about so was designated ‘Secret’ and wasn’t released until decades later.

          Your comments say more about you than you realize.

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 10:04 am | Permalink

          De Gaulle was against the UK joining because he saw us as an American Trojan horse.And that is also what the US wanted -us in a politically integrated Europe-as an anchor and rudder-to ensure it remained an American vassal.

          • Posted May 23, 2019 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

            More likely De Gaulle was miffed because he spent the war years as a guest in England, and France was liberated by the Allies – including England. Must have been terribly humiliating for a Frenchman – to see his country liberated from tyranny by the English

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 10:52 am | Permalink

          So where was the referendum in the 196os that referred such an important matter back to the people, or might this be yet another case of politicians acting beyond their authority?

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 4:13 pm | Permalink


          Considering it was Heath who took the country into the EEC, I don’t see the relevance of citing Wilson.

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:16 pm | Permalink


          Oh dear

          It was Heath who took us in not Wilson

          WE didn’t beg, a few of our wet politicians may have done, but no one asked us until we were already in

          Anyhow what you fail to appreciate is that was over 40 years ago and things have changed a tad since then. Do keep up Margret , I’m assuming you’re only 17 or 18 as we all know that all Remainers are young and thrusting and all Brexiteers that are left alive are really old so I would have thought you had a better handle on why the EU is so bad for future technology

          • Posted May 23, 2019 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

            Correct me if I’m wrong, referring to the “begging of Britain to join the EU” Thatcher was totally against becoming a full member, but it was Major and Heseltine who led the coup to oust her because she refused to agree with their wishes. When full membership was up for discussion and she realised how much we would be tied by their ruling, more importantly losing our currency to the Euro, she told the EU in Brussels No, No, and left. Thus her demise was not long after this. IF we don’t leave this time we will see the Euro introduced without a doubt, and Westminster will become a branch of EU Governing in London, it’s verging on this already !!

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

          Non! over and over again. – from that tall thin Frenchie, who was allowed to land in Heston, without papers, and take up residence in Carlton Gardens for 4 years, living a comfortable life at Britain’s expense. Some gratitude!! No wonder the older generation, who either remembered, or were told at their mother & father’s knees, what an ungrateful bastard he was. Any similarity with the current situation is entirely unintended…

  7. Posted May 22, 2019 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

    Indeed. Real UK democracy, a small state, freedom and choice please.

  8. Posted May 22, 2019 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

    While there are various estimates it will not be far wrong to say that only about 6% of UK businesses are involved in exporting to the rest of the EU, and their exports comprise about 12% of UK GDP, and yet our government economic policy, and in particular trade policy, is effectively determined by what some of the largest and noisiest of those companies say they want and must have. But when you look at how those sectors of the economy perform with the “frictionless” trade with the rest of the EU that it said to be essential it turns out that in many cases it is our competitors in the other EU countries that are deriving the greatest benefit, and often UK companies do better exporting to the rest of the world over trade barriers than they do with exports to the EU.

  9. Posted May 22, 2019 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    But you don’t understand John. The civil service still has colonial beliefs and really hate Britain (England).
    They being all knowing think that we are too stupid to control our own affairs.
    We are seen as knuckle dragging morons who need keeping in their place.
    I hope when this is all over and we have an independent enquiry, all those working against Britain will not only lose their jobs but all pension entitlement as well.
    I think Farage is the only one with the guts to do this.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 11:22 pm | Permalink

      Ian wragg

      Not all Civil Service personnel hate Britain, that is somewhat of an over exaggeration (actually the vast majority of CS rank and file don’t – just ordinary employees trying to do their jobs under difficult and very often challenging conditions), though given the very dire current circumstances, poor upper (biased) management and nefarious Olly Robbins in charge, one would think so.

      But trust me, some senior CS individuals are excellent, but are naturally keeping their heads down; these are arduous times within the politicized CS?

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 10:07 am | Permalink

      The upper echelons have never gotten over losing the empire.Like a deluded Norma Desmond – “I am big,it’s the pictures that got small.”

  10. Posted May 22, 2019 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

    Nothing positive seems to have changed since Dr Redwood’s 8 points http://johnredwoodsdiary.com/2018/12/27/8-things-wrong-with-the-withdrawal-agreement/

  11. Posted May 22, 2019 at 3:57 pm | Permalink

    I think it would be a good idea for eg the ERG to prepare a short briefing sheet for conservative MPs appearing in the media talking on this subject. Yesterday brexit supporter Andrea jenkyn showed she hadn’t much idea at all on what ‘WTO rules’ means. A favourite BBC question is which countries trade ‘only’ under WTO rules? Answer obviously is just about all countries trade with one another either under agreed FTAs or else with other facilitating arrangements – under WTO rules. Many countries trade with the EU without FTAs, albeit with other minor arrangements in place. The US, China, India and until recently Japan are examples.

    Farage was also unable to deal with this question either on question time a couple of weeks ago. You’d have thought by now people in public life would have bothered to brief themselves on the case they are making! They should come to a teach-in with Sir John.

  12. Posted May 22, 2019 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

    off topic sorry.

    Remember – Liam Byrne message left in his desk drawer . ‘I’m afraid there is no money.’
    just about summed up Brown’s administration.

    What will Theresa’s message be?
    Good luck with your new job, I dreamed of it all my life, got it and found I hadn’t got a clue how to do it. Never mind, anyone with some dexterity regarding truth and fiction, tomorrow or mañana, trust and deceipt, vision and make believe, will do just fine. After all you will learn you are surrounded by fools, who are less able than you.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 11:45 pm | Permalink

      Fred H Quite right.

      Perhaps a fitting political epitaph for T. May would be from Nicolas Chamfort

      “There are well-dressed foolish ideas, just as there are well-dressed fools”

      Parliament today….”The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so sure of themselves and wiser people so full of doubts” – Bertrand Russell

  13. Posted May 22, 2019 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

    How many of them do so on pure WTO terms (no FTA, no economic partnership agreement, no sectoral or other deals)?

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

      Peter Parsons

      So what? How many times do you need to be told customers buy things from sellers , governments dont make and trade things ?

      Any idea how many reciprocal deals there are already in place? It really is vanishingly simple , if you want to trade with the worlds 5th biggest economy and the worlds 2nd most powerful country you agree mutual standards recognition the moment we FINALLY leave

      • Posted May 24, 2019 at 8:08 am | Permalink

        Yes I do have an idea how many reciprocal deals are out there (the information is all in the public domain) that the UK would leave by exiting on WTO terms and which would need to be re-negotiated from a weaker position.

        Governments don’t buy and sell (in the most part) but they do affect how easy it is, and adopting a pure WTO terms position (let’s be like Mauritania) means the UK government deliberately making things more difficult than they are today.

  14. Posted May 22, 2019 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

    This woman will go, but the Tory party still has so many May lackies and quislings clinging on. Tomorrow is the day to begin dismantling the Tory Party and installing BP – no time to lose!

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:22 pm | Permalink

      That being said, Sir Joe, I do feel for our host having given much of his life, time, energy and loyalty to what has proved in the end to be a cause lost by people so much less than he is. This is terribly sad.

      As the poet said, though: ”If you can make one heap of all your winnings and risk it on one turn of pitch and toss, and lose….” etc Perhaps now’s the time to admit losing.

  15. Posted May 22, 2019 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    Thank you, Sir John. Facts4eu is a great site – lots of balanced, informative articles, without the hysteria of the Main Stream Mania!

  16. Posted May 22, 2019 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

    In fact, not all British businesses are even welcome to trade with the EU. In 2016 our small businesses were cordially invited by Mr Junkers to trade elsewhere if they work in the digital sector or online. If this expands as planned, those selling physical objects will be hit as well.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 11:55 pm | Permalink


      I don’t doubt your veracity, but I find this hard to believe….I have never come across such a situation myself? We deal deeply within multi-billion businesses across Europe (diverse Digital products) and to my personal knowledge nobody has ever brought your experience to my attention?

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:42 am | Permalink

        I suggest you check the effects of EU Digital Vat. Effectively in 2015 the VAT threshold for crossparty selling was removed, and if someone in a different EU country bought something, the seller had to identify the location of the buyer through two pieces of information and remit VAT to that country. It meant working out 81 different VAT rates, ensuring that data was captured and keeping for 10 years. Paypal doesn’t capture two pieces of information. Few SMEs, microfirms, or smaller non-profits can do this.

        EUVATAction, the group formed by small businesses across Europe to fight it, reported 17% of affected businesses closed. 22% had to stop selling to the EU, and Junkers’ response (two days before the referendum) was that if it was too hard to sell to the EU, then those businesses shouldn’t. The VATMOSS system resulted in users getting threatened with legal action for discrepencies caused by currency shifts between remitting the funds and the recieving country processing the payments months later (a 49p difference in one case). You can find the full details on the wayback machine under euvataction.

        Some of the countries have started putting thresholds in, but it is slow going and they aren’t standardised. Until then, its easier for the groups affected to trade with Australia and the US and the EU.

  17. Posted May 22, 2019 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

    Why as this information not been in the public domain , surly the likes of Benn Cooper Grieve and all the other remoaners know this information but didn’t want joe public to be aware of it , so what is the hidden secrets of these muppet remoaners for not telling but there constant bile on having another referendum

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

      Thank you for your explanation, AI.

      Clearly, we are operating in different circumstances?

  18. Posted May 22, 2019 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    There is nothing to stop Britain trading with the EU without single market or customs union membership.

    You just need to decide where you want your border. Down the Irish Sea – making a united Ireland inevitable?

    Or along the actual border with the Republic – which would cause a return to violence and also ultimately make a united Ireland inevitable?

    Tory Brexiteers simply need to take their pick and inform the DUP which way you have decided to sell them out.

    Incidentally – has Facts4EU listed how many countries which border the EU but are not members of either (or both) the single market and customs union have both free and frictionless trade with the EU? No, thought not. The answer to that question is close to zero.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

      Switzerland is in neither the SM nor CU and exports 5x per capita to the EU more than the UK on a virtually frictionless basis.

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 4:59 am | Permalink

        It’s either frictionless or it is not. There is no such thing as “virtually frictionless”. And EU/ Switz trade is anything but frictionless, as the large border posts used by trucks show. That’s no good for Irealnd, that’s why we have the backstop. The EU will never agree a deal with the UK that does not include a backstop that ensures trade in Ireland is frictionless, not virtually frictionless. That’s Brexit, that’s what you voted for, live in the real world where the UK has to make compromises and difficult choices – or call it off

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 7:25 am | Permalink

          You do not know how I voted.

          trade over the Swiss-EU borders is huge, the trade over the Irish border is minimal. Of course trusted trader status and other agreed measures could be used for the odd milk float or lorry of Guinness. Most Swiss-EU border posts are unmarked and unmanned. The Irish backstop is a ruse to trap the UK into effective membership of the CU and much of the SM. It’s clear to everyone now and should never have been agreed.

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 8:04 am | Permalink

          Helena, those of us who have spent decades importing and exporting fail to understand where this “frictionless” term comes from.
          In paperwork and admin complexity, there is little difference between trading with EU and non EU nations.
          In terms of delays for trucks at borders, my experience is that it makes little difference dealing with queues at one port of entry to another.
          Queues are caused usually by industrial action, security alerts and peak holiday times with delays being more to do with motorway network problems, sudden bad weather or mechanical problems with vehicles.
          However businesses try to factor in these things when planning deliveries lead times.
          Most goods a totally arrive via ships in containers at huge ports like Rotterdam and Felixstowe where a container is unloaded and checked through in seconds.
          Ireland already has a border and different tax levels and regulations on each side right now.
          You do not need border posts, just a trusted trader scheme for those larger operators who use the border regularly.
          The UK will not build a hard border and the Republic of Ireland have said the same thing.
          So a solution will be found very soon once we leave.
          I guess you have never actually run a company that exports and imports Helena, it sounds like you believe everything you read in the Guardian.

          • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:55 pm | Permalink

            Edward2….’believe everything you read in the Grundiad’ – – just loved it. Still laughing.

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 11:06 am | Permalink

          Balderdash, and you know it! Virtually frictionless means most things go unchecked apart from a small amount of vehicles usually selected at random, and they don’t even need to be checked at a border post.

          The EU says it doesn’t want a border post. The Irish Republic says it doesn’t want a border post, the UK government doesn’t want a border post, so who is going to build one?

          Forty years ago after leaving the oil industry, I used to work in motor transport and even back then we had such a thing as a TIR where vehicles were sealed and cleared at source. Technology has advanced and improved immeasurably since then.

          Get up to speed! We’re in the technological era! This is just the EU aided and abetted by a soon-to-be-gone Prime Minister throwing unnecessary obstacles in our way in order to spin things out.

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:23 pm | Permalink


          As you are clearly someone who has never run a business or traded internationally I think your opinions are of no value. Most trade is “virtually” frictionless due to technology.

          Just so you know trade within the single market IS NOT wholly frictionless either , there are non tariff barriers, licences and paperwork

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

          The EU may police THEIR border how they wish. We as an independent Sovereign State will manage OUR borders how we wish.

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 8:47 am | Permalink

        The Swiss EU border is not frictionless for goods. There are border checks, queues and bureaucracy. As borders go it is very efficient but it is simply untrue to say it is frictionless.

        It IS virtually frictionless for people though as Switzerland is in Schengen.

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

          There are queues delays and paperwork checks at Calais.
          Frictionless is a made up word.
          No trade anywhere in the world is frictionless.

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:24 pm | Permalink


          Funnily enough the same goes WITHIN the Single Market too. There are border checks, queues and bureaucracy. As borders go it is very efficient but it is simply untrue to say it is frictionless.

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

          Andy I think we realise EU nationals and various other economic migrants and refugees, make their way across what should be borders quite unchecked. Strangely nothing stops them all the way to the Channel or lorry parks, odd that?

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 11:16 am | Permalink

        Switzerland has freedom of movement of people, is a member of the Schengen area and contributes to the EU budget.

  19. Posted May 22, 2019 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

    Incidentally – the Facts4EU numbers are clearly wrong anyway.

    There are approximately 195 countries in the world – give or take a few, depending on how you define ‘country’. Let’s be generous to Facts4EU and round it up to 200 to give them the benefit of the doubt.

    There are 28 EU member states – all in the single market and customs union. Plus, countries like Norway – in the single market – and Turkey, which has a customs union, with the EU. Then there are the microstates surrounding the EU – like Andorra, San Marino, Monaco and Liechtenstein – and Switzerland which participates in large parts of the single market and is in Schengen. That’s at least 35 countries which are in either the single market, the customs union, both or which have agreement to replicate large parts of them.

    Even using Brexiteer dodgy maths a maximum of 200 minus a minimum of 35 does not equal 179. Facts matter.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 9:45 pm | Permalink

      Alternatively, instead of a quick google to satisfy your “It must be wrong because _I_ am always right” mentality, you could check just a tiny bit deeper.

      Fact: When dependent territories are included, the United Nations recognizes a total of 241 countries and territories.

      So, yes, when Facts4EU asserts that “179 states around the world sell into the EU’s Single Market” you can be assured that they have used the EU’s own data and statistics (it’s what they do, y’see…) and would therefore have started at the correct total number of 241.

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 8:57 am | Permalink

        Yes – I’ve found the 241 figure too. And it is wrong.

        Facts 4EU says ‘independent states’ on its claims. You only reach 241 by including dependent territories, disputed regions and so on.

        241, for example, includes Northern Ireland. Clearly not an independent state. And it includes Puerto Rico. Also not an independent state.

        Facts4EU could publish their list of 179 independent states so you can judge. I bet they won’t.

        Incidentally – they are using an interesting technique. The essence of what they are saying is correct. Most countries and not in the single market and / or customs union. That is true.

        But the higher the number they can get the more shocked and outraged you become. 179 is more outrageous than 164 which is more outrageous than 151.

        I have neither the time nor the inclination to work out the exact number. But a basic level of general knowledge tells you Facts4EU are wrong – either through a mistake or a deliberate attempt to mislead.

        If they are not they can publish a full list of the 179 independent states to prove it.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

      Andy….as you said ‘give or take a few’. Your point was?

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 4:30 am | Permalink

      Please see our reply in a spearate comment below.

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 11:10 am | Permalink

        We’re talking dunces I’m afraid, and this one is so rabidly infected with the pro-EU disease, they have grown a particularly dense skull.

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:53 am | Permalink

      AS always – this remoaner, like all remoaners tries to muddy the water, without accepting the basic concept stated….

      Whether it is 179 or 169, the fact remains that many countries trade easily with the EU without having to be a party to the customs union or single market membership…

  20. Posted May 22, 2019 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

    It gets even better, the firm I work at manufactures electronic goods, there is a scheme from the EU so we can claim tariffs back on some imported components to try and level the field with countries outside the EU.

    However the costs of inspectors and reorganising the warehouse make it cheaper to just pay the tariffs at a £25 million pound a year firm, that is the type of bthing that happens when bureaucrats try to work with private industry.

  21. Posted May 22, 2019 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

    The anti leave propaganda is relentless.
    I’ve not seen anything so concerted in my lifetime.
    For a lot of people in the media and in Government and in the Quangocracy and in the Charity NGO sector and in Public sector and in the University industry there is complete opposition to leaving the EU. .
    I have a friend who is in a senior position in a leading University and he is opposed to leaving the EU.
    Only because he gets millions in funding for projects and lors of grant aid from the EU for inter European travel to conferences at other European venues.
    Meanwhile back here in the competitive sector, nearly aĺl I speak to long for a free independent and democratic future for the UK.

    This obsession with trade deals by remain is ridiculous.
    Japan has just done a deal with the EU yet have you noticed and shortages of Japanese goods in the UK or Europe in the last 40 years?

  22. Posted May 22, 2019 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

    Have been saying this sort of thing for a long time. Because there is a comprehensive lack of understanding in the HoC of how international trade works, it will be necessary, that you and the few who do understand, to spell it out word by word to the ignorant. Put it to them as fact not a subject for debate. We have suffered too much verbal diarhea and malicious predictions of a plague of frogs. These voices need squashing unceremoniously. A new leader needs to take a ruthless line with any dissent within the parliamentary party in the HoC.

    Once we are rid of this PM and in the shadow of the EU election result it might be easier for your colleagues to open their minds to leaving on WTO rules. Particularly if it is followed by a FTA offer and a continuity offer underArt 24 of GATT. The EU would be on the back foot were they to refuse it and have to explain why to their industrialists.

    Under Art 168 of the WA we the UK are denied recourse to the Vienna Convention on onerous treaties. This alone suggest to me that the EU consider the WA an onerous treaty. The EU must be told that the WA is dead. It should be edited for aspects that are beneficial to both the UK and EU. These aspects should be offered minus any payment of the mooted £39 Billion. There maybe a need for a financial settlement, subject to audit and agreement.

    It all requires some very hard nosed leadership.

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:01 am | Permalink

      The EU will say no. It has made that 100% clear. The WA is settled.

      What is your Plan B?

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:55 am | Permalink

        Helena the WA is only settled in the minds of the EU and one T May. If you can read you will find plan B as you call it above. Engage brain before opening mouth, it makes you much more credible.

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 11:14 am | Permalink

        Nothing is agreed until everything is agreed.

        Let’s see what the new broom can come up with before making such ridiculous pronouncements. I’m sure we can do better than May and Robbins!

  23. Posted May 22, 2019 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

    Getting that woman out of Downing Street will require a forceps delivery!

  24. Posted May 22, 2019 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

    We’re past this stage. Remove this stain from our politics. We want May removed. She’s the living embodiment of Europhile manipulation and a direct threat to our nation, its democracy and our freedoms

    She’s an even more potent threat than the Marxist virus that sit opposite you every day

  25. Posted May 22, 2019 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

    Just in time production lines are possible ONLY inside the EU. Outside the EU, border checks are unavoidable. That is why Toyota and Honda and Nissan are saying goodbye to Derby, Swindon and Sunderland. Won’t hurt your pension though will it, Mr Redwood.

    Reply Just in time systems use non EU components today! Honda are pulling out of the EU altogether as they do not sell enough cars here. The other Japanese companies are committed to new investment here

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 7:50 pm | Permalink

      Julie Gorton

      “That is why Toyota and Honda and Nissan are saying goodbye to Derby, Swindon and Sunderland.”

      Ms Gorton, said manufacturers are making their corporate decisions based on global circumstances and the volume of car sales.

      JIT is not dependent on the EU. As a matter of fact I once had a BMW product that had an American engine that was made in Brazil. The camshaft was Chinese.

      Also, if I may mention; there are plenty to choose from in the establishment who might arguably not be deserved of the fat cat pensions they have, but in my opinion I don’t believe for a second Mr Redwood to be of them.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 11:17 pm | Permalink

      How do you think cross border JIT systems work elsewhere in the world and how do you think they work inside the EU including non-EU components?

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 12:20 am | Permalink

      Julie Gorton

      Apart from your inappropriate comment regarding John Redwood, which businesses to you personally run in Europe and the rest of the globe to back up your JIT claim?

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:08 am | Permalink

      Greater ignorance on the subject of JIT (Kanban) it would be hard to find on the part of ms Gorton. My own experience involved JIT from Spain, Germany, Japan all to the same ultimate destination. The informstion flowing through the internet may have been different in each case but the goods arrived as
      required despite a major earthquake on one occasion.

      Our host is absolutely correct in his reply. I only wish the Gorton level of ignorance , no doubt motivated by some missbegotten political dream, was not equally
      prevalent in the HoC.

  26. Posted May 22, 2019 at 5:41 pm | Permalink

    Odd that we are never reminded of this FACT by the die-hard Remainers, who wish for some way-over-the-hill foreigners to continue to dominate our lives while living it up at taxpayers expense in their Five Star luxurious surroundings in Brussels. ALL With huge salaries, unaccounted expenses and barrels of Claret. Odd that some 10,000 (30%) of the EU employees earn more than the British Prime Minister but rely upon British money to pay them all and exactly what, do these people do, to warrant such a huge salary? And super pensions?
    So, the questions is, ” Why do we have to pay all of this money just to obtain the same rights as any of the 179 States who pay them nothing”?
    Any Remainers like to comment?

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:24 am | Permalink

      And none of these Brussels Bureaucrats pay a penny in tax on their salaries and pensions. This is why so many of our chattering classes with past work experience in the EU are so vocal in it’s support. They are not idealists, they are just in the trough. In one case it runs in the family.

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 11:43 am | Permalink

        Bribery and corruption abound. Which is why their epithet “Brussels mafia” is so accurate in that respect.

  27. Posted May 22, 2019 at 6:12 pm | Permalink

    Yes Sir John, I well remember, just before the Referendum, television viewers being told by someone who was then a Conservative MP that trade with the rest of the EU would dry up overnight if the country voted to leave. The impression was given by several Remain campaigners that losing access to the single market would be like a rerun of the Napoleonic blockade.

  28. Posted May 22, 2019 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

    So, why is the question ‘name any other country that trades with others on WTO terms? – which I first heard on Question Time the week before last and posed to a Brexiteer on a current affairs program the other day … why do people not appear to have an answer to the question?

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:52 am | Permalink

      ‘name any other country that trades with others on WTO terms? ‘

      At the current time: Britain, Canada, every EU country, Japan, China…If you mean solely trades on WTO Terms there’s only one, but every country trades with others it has no specific deals with on WTO terms. Also areas or sectors not covered by specific deals usually have trade falling under the umbrella of WTO terms.

  29. Posted May 22, 2019 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    On LBC this afternoon the rumour was being reported that she is resigning tonight! Could it be true?!

    Reply No

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

      Reply to reply . . . . . . Shame!

  30. Posted May 22, 2019 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

    Off topic – I don’t care what the likes of ‘small state’, ‘no government interference’ people like LifeLogic say … we MUST support British Steel. The idea of a first world, developed nation having to rely on other countries to make steel is unthinkable.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

      “The idea of a first world, developed nation having to rely on other countries to make steel is unthinkable.”

      The problem is politicians over the years DO NOT THINK!

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 10:43 pm | Permalink

      Quite right, M W. Follow the example set by P Trump. Obama mocked him (videoclip on internet) when campaigning claiming that these industries were gone forever “you cannot bring them back”. Well, P Trump did, and they are prospering and bringing wealth and jobs, and security. P T believes economic security is part of national security.
      The final blow apparently for British Steel was yet another payment demanded under the carbon emissions scheme (EU Directives/man made global warming “science”

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 10:56 pm | Permalink

      Just to add to what I was saying above Mike W: I gather the US are ceasing sourcing steel for military and construction purposes from the Chinese, and now focusing on home based steel manufacture. It goes without saying that inferior steel poses huge risks, including to national security. Supplying inferior grade products has also been recognised as a possible weapon for use by a hostile force. P Trump views economic security an integral part of protecting the nation.

      The UK is so vulnerable with huge infrastructure projects handed over to questionable foreign powers, and likewise with electronic equipment in communications and military hardware, for example. Utter madness. A complete rethink is needed, but we need politicians with brains and wisdom, and common sense, determined to restore power and sovereignty back to this country and to build it up again.

      Reply The Chinese have been suppying steel of the specified quality with quality control. The issues are subsidies, price etc

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:40 am | Permalink

        Our host is correct in his reply. Steel like almost anything else in the industrial sphere is made and supplied within the restraints of ISO 9000/1,2,3,4. There will be batch melt trackability on every piece used, so ensuring quality.

        The problem for government is that their hands have been tied by EU regulation on subsidy. This can only increase the need to get out of the EU fast and cleanly, so lifting this burdon on a strategic industry. The May WA ensures that British Steel would be dead and buried by the time we are out if ever.

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 10:44 am | Permalink

        The largest investment in the US aluminium industry for years is coming from Rusal(Russian) which is building a flat rolled plant in Kentucky for the auto industry,importing “low carbon” aluminium from Siberia(it’s produced by a new plant hydro-powered by one of Siberia’s mighty rivers).

        And have you seen the US’s oil imports from Russia?As a result of sanctions on Iran and Venezuela,crude imports from Russia have gone from 1.5m barrels in 2017 to 7.5m barrels in 2018,expected to at least triple this year.13 tankers delivered 5m barrels in the first haf of May(source Bloomberg)”on steroids” is what one trader called it!

        Isn’t Russia supposed to be an official adversary.etc ed

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 9:13 am | Permalink

      Re. British Steel, I wholeheartedly agree. Britain must have its own steel industry. When I think of the millions/billions wasted these past three years, we must either support British Steel or take it back into state ownership permanently. Anything less would be a disgrace.

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

        Mike Wilson: “we MUST support British Steel.”

        I agree.

        And if the government can spend £7Bn more on EU contributions then I think we can spare a billion to maintain British Steel over, say 5 years while it introduces more automation and efficiencies.

        On the other hand, while steel is mighty useful, there are other materials that are interesting, carbon fibre and such like.

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:07 pm | Permalink


          “And if the government can spend £7Bn more on EU contributions then I think we can spare a billion to maintain British Steel”

          You are aware that British Steel was sold to a private equity company called Greyfull for £1 by Tata?

          Who allowed that to happen? And where would any money go to?

          • Posted May 23, 2019 at 8:01 pm | Permalink

            margaret howard: “You are aware that British Steel was sold to a private equity company called Greyfull for £1 by Tata?”

            No, I wasn’t. Thank you for the update.

            Then we could reasonably Nationalise it, pay £1000 in compensation. Then use the £7B we don’t need to send to the EU to keep it running while it restructured.

            Surely, even Greyfull couldn’t object to a 99,000% return on their investment?

  31. Posted May 22, 2019 at 7:17 pm | Permalink

    Brilliant insight ; similarly, people got by without general anaesthetic for centuries, a slug of rum and off with his leg , worked just fine .
    Perhaps we should go back to that .
    By the way is there not one single person who reads John Redwoods blog who understands that importing things other people are good at making ,makes us better off ?
    Did none of you even do an O Level in economics ? Seriously anyone ? Anyone ….?

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

      Try telling that to the British Steel workers losing their jobs because of dumped Chinese steel reaching the UK via Spain.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 7:33 pm | Permalink


      Actually when I was at School ‘economics’ was confined to matters of the kitchen, and exclusively dealt with teaching girls how to cook and feed a family.

      Boys were usually doing metalwork – need less to say more weapons were crafted than anything else. No such thing as H&S, you got burned, you got cut, you did it right thereafter, and many damn fine craftsmen came from my generation.

      Ah them were the days.

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

      You are getting increasingly silly NM.
      The UK is a nation that wants to trade with the whole world.
      The EU is a protectionist and tariff charging bloc.

      • Posted May 22, 2019 at 9:26 pm | Permalink

        The EU, USA , China and Japan are 75% of the world`s economy and a lot more in terms of consuming high end product and services which is what we do. Get a sense of proportion , read a book perhaps ?
        The new global services market form which we are now excluded will be the next leap for the world , which it will take without us .
        There are considerable obstacles to trade with the US (largely due to its legal system ) and China , and the best we could possibly hope for is to beg to have the same deal as the EU( which we would not get)

        The plain fact is that this is the most protectionist government the country has seen since the 1960s and then it was understandable . No surprise, it is all based on fear of the outside and dislike of foreigners , hardly going to be outward looking was it

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 8:15 am | Permalink

          I fail to understand what point you are trying to make NM
          I of course realise how big USA Japan and the EU are.
          Are you saying all three will refuse to trade with us after we leave?
          Sounds a bit unlikely to me.

          As for being excluded from global services after we leave the EU, well that is just very silly and totally wrong.
          You really think because we are not in the EU the whole world will refuse to trade services like banking, insurances and commodity exchanges?
          And then you end on the usual remainers fallback slur, that the UK dislikes foreigners.
          Oh dear.

          • Posted May 23, 2019 at 4:57 pm | Permalink


            “You really think because we are not in the EU the whole world will refuse to trade services like banking, insurances and commodity exchanges?”

            Are these services supposed to employ the workers of a country of over 66m people?

            OK for small countries like Switzerland and Liechtenstein but not one whose wealth rested on making things the world wanted to buy.

            Many of our talented young people are now reluctant to incur the vast debts a university education will lumber them with and would like to learn a skilled trade. Where are they going to do that if we stop making things?

          • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

            You have gone off on a tangent now Margaret.
            Service industries employ vast numbers and are growing.
            Universities and Colleges are educating record numbers.
            We need to get more qualified and skilled as a nation.
            You need to do a bit more research instead of only reading the Guardian

          • Posted May 23, 2019 at 10:43 pm | Permalink


            “Helena, it sounds like you believe everything you read in the Guardian.”

            “Margaret …You need to do a bit more research instead of only reading the Guardian”

            Running out of anything original to say?

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 2:33 pm | Permalink


          Well, it is clear you are simply a textbook analysis of the worst kind….no personal experience to draw upon, just a sciolistic regurgitator of other people thoughts!

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:24 pm | Permalink

      Remainer? Insult?

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:37 pm | Permalink

      What’s your point? It’s really not that clear….


    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

      newmania….so I buy a BMW costing £30,000 rather than a mini costing £20,000. Employment for germans, no employment for Brits.. Why is the country better off? I spent £30k , Why am I better off.?

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 10:48 pm | Permalink

        Fred H

        Seeing that both companies are owned by the Germans and no doubt all their profits are going there, what is your point? Am I missing something?

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:29 am | Permalink

      I did and at the time (1974) it was already obvious that we were unsuited to the EEC. Teachers were brave enough to say so in those days.

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

        Jagman84….brave and very leftie. No OFSTED to investigate pupil brainwashing in those days.

  32. Posted May 22, 2019 at 7:25 pm | Permalink

    The WTO has recently published a report on global value chains. Its very first sentence states that “More than two thirds of all world trade passes through global value chains (GVCs) in which production crosses at least one border, and typically many more, before final assembly”.

    Germany, together with China and the USA, is one of the three prime GVC hubs. For the UK to seek to join these three as a major GVC hub it needs a change in mindset. That requires a change of PM, and Chancellor, who lack the vision and boldness needed for the UK to take advantage of Brexit by developing UK strengths in emerging technologies. This will not occur so long as the UK government remains a captive to CBI thinking and rule taking from the EU. That way lies stagnation.

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

      Those chains are likely to break down because of the split between America and China and the US’s arbitrary use of sanctions,particularly secondary sanctions.No-one will have any confidence in dealing with the US.

      Two blocs are likely to emerge-with increasing intra-bloc trading.People currently in the middle will have to make up their minds which way to fall.

  33. Posted May 22, 2019 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

    Hard to imagine anyone more incompetent and ineffective than May but I must admit the 1922 committee are running her close.

  34. Posted May 22, 2019 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

    A ban on plastic straws. Well, we used to sip third of a pint milk from bottles with paper straws.(1962) in schools. It was great because you could over-wet the end going into your mouth and let it flow more slowly avoiding hiccups too.
    Brown paper bags carrying a stone of potatoes also worked without public transport or cars when it rained due to Climate non-Change as it rains now.
    We have Progressed to Insanity where the young are operating computer systems way beyond our time to understand them and indeed understand that new is not necessarily better in the nature of Nature.
    If it works, don’t fix it!

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 9:06 pm | Permalink


      Ah yes.

      Do you remember that crispy hard toilet paper ? Izal, I think it was called.

      Not like today where they have double quilted soft toilet ’tissue’.

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:38 am | Permalink

        For the soft of heart they could have used soft tissues for colds, man-size. Remember that!

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

        ….I remember my father saying to us kids, in his day he and my mother would go for a nice dinner, watch a film at the local cinema, quick pint before home time, and still have change from half a crown…those must have been truly marvelous days? Just a little fun };O)

  35. Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

    One Tory MP and others have been caught out, so it seems, with the media interviewer replying to “We can trade on WTO terms” with “Well, name just one country in this world which trades entirely on WTO terms.”
    Even Farage fenced on answering this.

    I lack knowledge on this.

    Is there a country which can avail itself of WTO standards and actually does so?
    A journalist who takes the right-wing, eurosceptic position helped the MP in question by saying “WTO terms is just a starting point only” Is this true?

    • Posted May 22, 2019 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

      I would say yes. In the same way that to use a car on UK roads, you are required to have a minimum of third-party insurance. However, most drivers have either TPF&T, fully comprehensive or no-claims bonus protected cover. Add on breakdown cover, courtesy car, legal protection,etc and you create far more than the basic package. A trading arrangement between nations can build in a similar way.

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:04 am | Permalink

      No, Prigger. Not one country trades only on WTO terms. Because WTO terms are so very basic and so very feeble. Something to remember next time you hear someone calling for a “WTO Brexit”. It’s like calling for a stale bread and muddy water banquet

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:23 am | Permalink

        So are you admitting that all trade will not end when we exit the EU? If so, it would be a start in your journey back to sanity. I suspect that you have a vested interest in maintaining the EU stranglehold over the UK.

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:37 am | Permalink

          The point is that Brexit will reduce trade. The EU is home to the freeest international trade ever. And we are leaving. Do it if you want but don’t pretend you’re improving trade by doing it

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 11:22 am | Permalink

          Well said!

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:41 am | Permalink

        Thankfully Helena, we think our country will be okay. If we would not be okay, it would be silly making ourselves dependent on a greater power, only a puny gang member bows to the cock of the school

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 11:27 am | Permalink

        Has anyone said that the UK wants and desires and is best to trade only on WTO terms? I haven’t heard so.

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

        Again Helena you show your lack of knowledge of trade.
        WTO schedules work for over 90% of world trade.
        Their rules are a very popular way of controlling the basics of international trade between nations.
        Ma y nations have added other things to their agreements with others to make trading even easier.
        Things like wordings on packaging or indentical paperwork or quality certification or agreed tariffs.
        Things that make the product meet the requirements of customers in a particular market.
        And the existing EU agreements that the UK complies with can be copied across after we leave.

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:44 am | Permalink

      We have no independent trade deals because the EU treaties ban us from signing trade deals until we have left the EU.

      A bit like an employer saying you can’t accept another job until you have left your current one, in the hope that you will think the risk of being jobless is too great.

      The 5th biggest economy is a big attraction for trade, and the EU will be just a little more undesirable when we leave. After all, the EU economies are not exactly in great shape, are they, despite all the ‘advantages’ of EU membership.

  36. Posted May 22, 2019 at 10:54 pm | Permalink

    I gather the US are ceasing sourcing steel for military and construction purposes from the Chinese, and now focusing on home based steel manufacture. It goes without saying that inferior steel poses huge risks, including to national security. Supplying inferior grade products has also been recognised as a possible weapon for use by a hostile force. P Trump views economic security an integral part of protecting the nation.

    The UK is so vulnerable with huge infrastructure projects handed over to questionable foreign powers, and likewise with electronic equipment in communications and military hardware, for example. Utter madness. A complete rethink is needed, but we need politicians with brains and wisdom, and common sense, determined to restore power and sovereignty back to this country and to build it up again.

  37. Posted May 23, 2019 at 3:07 am | Permalink

    You should have resigned a long time ago Andrea, you haven’t done yourself any favours by continuing to support your deluded boss and her toxic WA treaty.

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:43 am | Permalink

      Yes she went AWOL from the fight for Brexit and deserts Mrs May as her ship sinks

  38. Posted May 23, 2019 at 4:50 am | Permalink

    Sir John, your reader ‘Andy’ above says “Incidentally – the Facts4EU numbers are clearly wrong anyway” and then goes through some country numbers.

    We are not wrong in our article. Wherever available we use the EU’s own official data, as in this case. The EU lists states from whom EU28 countries buy. It is a moot point whether all of these are included on other organisations’ lists as “countries”. In our article we referred to “states” – as did Sir John – and we excluded EEA, EFTA, and some countries with complex arrangements such as Turkey.

    Our data is correct. In any case the main point is that all these states sell into the Single Market without needing to be members of it. Nor are they in the Customs Union.

    As Andy says at the end of his comment: “Facts matter.” We agree.
    Best regards.

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:26 am | Permalink

      Andy has an agenda. Andy lies a lot. Don’t be a champagne Socialist like Andy….

      • Posted May 23, 2019 at 7:48 am | Permalink

        So Jagman84, Brexit Facts4EU.org does not have an agenda, does it?
        You’ve made my day, thanks.

        • Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:19 pm | Permalink


          Any anti-British sentiments make your day, very sad!

          • Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

            Dennis, an American site had this to say about fact-checking “A good fact-checking service will write with neutral wording and will provide unbiased sources to support their claims”. Although I agree that Facts4EU takes its information from official EU websites rather well, I cannot consider its everyday wording as neutral. It might please and arouse you, but to refuse to consider it might have a very strong bias in its various descriptions and comments is something only its already convinced public is doing.
            That’s all there was in my comment above, not pro-British nor anti-British.

          • Posted May 26, 2019 at 12:09 pm | Permalink


            I have my own multi-data sources to draw upon, which are significantly more than the average person has at his/her disposal and most probably yours?

            My comment was directed at your schadenfreude with regards to anything negative about Brexit and/or British values!

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 7:28 am | Permalink

      Good correction

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 8:42 am | Permalink

      Perhaps you can publish a full list of your 179 ‘independent states’?

      Name them all – so we can judge whether you are right.

      I’ll wait.

    • Posted May 23, 2019 at 10:21 am | Permalink

      Brexit Facts4EU.org

      -Andy is on a fool’s errand! Take no notice of him, nobody else does on this forum-

      “Please keep up your erudite research and excellent work your team is accomplishing!”

  39. Posted May 23, 2019 at 6:46 am | Permalink

    This subject was raised many times , but always talked down by remainers, despite the evidence.

    This shows the extent to which the establishment and others have been using deceit to control those that don’t fully understand the purpose of the EU.

    Propaganda and fake news stems so easily from the establishment agreeing news channels – No wonder people are confused and feel they cannot trust anybody…

  40. Posted May 23, 2019 at 7:44 am | Permalink

    If we left EU is there any chance we could buy spangles old English flavor again,

  41. Posted May 23, 2019 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    With over 70+ All Party Parliamentary Groups (Country Groups) maybe the MPs will now start working in those groups to increase trade…… and not as a jolly or a free holiday ?

    These groups need to scrutinised, they need to be results driven

  42. Posted May 23, 2019 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

    Theresa May must be in the control of extremely powerful external interests. It has been apparent for several months that there has been enough fuel (based on previous prime ministerial resignations) for her to resign at least 10 times over and yet still she persists! I no longer believe that this is due to any particular fortitude or sense of duty on her part but simply because she has not yet been given permission to leave the field.

  43. Posted May 23, 2019 at 8:05 pm | Permalink

    My apologies, I intended this comment to go under your post “the last days of Mrs May”

  44. Posted May 24, 2019 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    Indeed. And not one of them trades on WTO terms alone.

  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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