Trade hits new records

Remain tried to make out Brexit was mainly about trade. It was of course mainly about taking back control, giving us the right to make our own laws, set our own taxes and spend our own money. They also asserted it would damage our trade to leave. They said we would not even be able to roll over all the EU trade deals we were part of. Treasury, Bank, much of the civil service and Remain parties pushed out these lies continuously. The Treasury famously summed up its conclusions by saying wrongly that leaving would ” push the UK into recession and lead to a sharp rise in unemployment. ” Their severe  shock scenario meant an extra 800, 000 unemployed  and a 6% fall in GDP!

So what happened?

After the vote unemployment fell and the economy grew. Trade went up.

The UK did roll over all the EU trade deals into UK trade deals and in some cases negotiated improvements to them.

The UK went on to agree a trade deal with the Trans Pacific Partnership countries. The UK also at some needless political cost signed a trade agreement with the EU.

The government has recently released figures for what has happened to our trade since the vote and since we left. Our service exports have doubled since 2014 to non EU countries (2016 was a little up on 2014) and risen by more than a half since 2016 to the EU.

The UK is now the second largest exporter of services worldwide after the USA. We are now adding service sector chapters to trade deals which the EU was unwilling to do.

Total exports are up from under £600 bn in 2016 to £862 bn in the year to February 2024. They are up by a third to the EU and by considerably more tothe rest of the world.



  1. Stephen Reay
    May 8, 2024

    Then why does most people think Brexit is a failure? I must read it daily that Brexit failed and the EU often pushes out the same script.

    1. Michelle
      May 8, 2024

      As you say, daily the Remain establishment pumps out the propaganda that the sky is falling in because of Brexit.
      Little children have had to go back up the chimneys and the only boom in business is at the workhouse.
      The ‘Red Bus’ gets a mention even after all these years. I noted a Labour councillor elected in Liverpool put the ‘Red Bus’ in his speech, when any fool knows the figures on the Red Bus and NHS funding was merely an example.
      I do not know of one person who lost a job because of Brexit, but I know plenty who lost jobs because of the EU and freedom of movement.
      Of course all those on the EU gravy train will lose out and politicians now exposed without EU skirt to hide behind and work may involve a bit more now than just rubber stamping EU directives.
      It may be harder for the champagne socialists to buy their holiday home in Tuscany!!!

      1. Hope
        May 8, 2024

        This is despite your govt. doing its level best to prevent Brexit by acting in lock step to EU, making UK dependent on EU energy, giving away our fishing waters and linking any new deal to EU energy!, level playing fields with EU, Sunak implementing EU equality law into domestic legislation, refusing to scrap EU legislation thinking we have not noticed, placing border down the Irish Sea to make internal trade across our own country difficult, remaining under ECJ and ECHR to prevent divergence from EU.

        The list is endless JR. Just imagine what the UK could achieve with the conservative policies of Reform putting our nation first, second and last? Your party has been conquered by Labour, infiltrated by Dowden, May, Green, Hunt EU one nation types who will never let conservatives have a voice in your party again.

        I suggest your first priority is to regain your party so it actually believes in conservative values, a vision for conservatism and a strategy to drive forward and reverse the devastation Blaire brought on our nation. Unfortunately Lord Slim Cameron wants continuity Blaire. He is a clear symbol your party has reinforced its credentials as continuity Blaire pro EU socialism.

        Let us be clear Sunak, Cameron and Hunt prefer to give jobs and manufacturing to India and China, allowing mass immigration from both countries to steel our best ideas and to add insult give both overseas aid than to promote or act in our national interest. They also Choose to waste £3 billion a year of our taxes to corrupt Ukraine than fight EU to keep N.Ireland as part of our country. They are an absolute disgrace to our nation.

        NB: Oust Cameron before he commits our nation to war with Russia. War monger Cameron has already gone too far with supply of UK weapons and military personnel.

      2. Bill Smith
        May 8, 2024


        Freedom of movement was great of British youth and we seem to have much more migration now than in the past

      3. Timaction
        May 8, 2024

        So did the Treasury and all other Civil Serpents spewing out their lies get the sack? If not, why not as they can’t be trusted.

    2. Mike Wilson
      May 8, 2024

      Because the proportion of our trade with the EU has gone down. This is trumpeted by the Remain Establishment as evidence of the failure of Brexit. Whereas the volume of trade, the actual numbers, has gone up. It is a question of lies, lies and cherry picking statistics.

      1. Lifelogic
        May 8, 2024

        The balance of trade is still very poor but has narrowed slightly. Despite absurdly any business policies like net zero, very high taxes, over regulation and endless government waste – HS2, net zero, lockdowns, vast parasitic government, the net covid harm vaccines…

        Total imports of goods and services fell slightly in 2023, while annual total exports rose by £36.8 billion (4.6%), which saw the total annual trade balance narrow by £36.7 billion to a deficit of £53.0 billion.

      2. Bill Smith
        May 8, 2024

        Mike , trade has grown significantly across the world since we left the EU

    3. Ian wragg
      May 8, 2024

      I think the trade figures are a bit misleading. We are being used as a transfer station for LNG to mainland Europe. That significantly distorts the market.
      Also what about record Imports of electricity mainly from France.
      Thanks to the two amigos I had notification from my pension provider thar I will be paying £18.80 weekly tax at the age of 79 and you really think I will vote for you.

    4. Lifelogic
      May 8, 2024

      Propaganda from people like the BBC and the endless numbers of remoaners. This done despite the fact we only have a botched Brexit, have failed to take full advantage and endless anti-growth tax to death, regulate to death, currency debase, and mad rip off net zero energy policies pushed by May, Boris and Sunak’s ConSocialists.

      In the Telegraph today:- The BBC is hiding the toxic truth about anti-Israel protests
      Its reporting of campus demonstrations has failed to properly reflect the anti-Semitism at their heart

      Indeed also hiding the truth about climate alarmism and net zero, the extent of covid vaccine harms, the net harm of the lockdowns, how real economics works, the dire NHS, landlord and tenant, employment laws, the minimum wage, the rigged energy markets, private schools, what is a sensible size for the state sector, the appalling distortion of the market by the BBC poll tax…

      1. Lifelogic
        May 8, 2024

        So now shoppers have to pay, not only for all the shoplifters looting (encouraged by the police inaction and their we will do nothing statements) but now also the costs of private prosecutions. What are the police for just to stop people looking openly Jewish and from saying people cannot change gender it seems?

        A firm dubbed Britain’s first ‘private police force’ is to take a suspected burglar to court for the first time after officers failed to investigate a shoplifting spree. TM Eye were called in after £500 of sirloin steak and 20 bottles of prosecco were taken from an M&S.

        The private investigating force of former police detectives was called in after police refused to investigate.

    5. MFD
      May 8, 2024

      Because the Mr Nasties and incompetents want to push that narrative Stephen. Some of the stupid agreements that have been made with the eu illustrate their wish to punish the population for spoiling their money making scams!! We must not back down to people like sunny boy Sunak, we must do every thing we can to foil their plans.
      That means voting Reform UK even if it is just a gesture. We must also make life impossible for the trash they have imported into OUR country.

    6. glen cullen
      May 8, 2024

      Its no longer brexit failure, its net-zero failure
      ‘Ford’s European executive Martin Sander told the Financial Times on Tuesday that the company is ready to limit the sale of traditional petrol models in the United Kingdom to meet electric vehicle targets set by the country’
      The tory future is green …the plan (Sunaks plan) hasn’t changed

    7. Paula
      May 8, 2024

      Ans: because we all feel poor. And because immigration and crime has gone through the roof.

  2. Jude
    May 8, 2024

    So, why is this not front page news across all sections of the media?
    Surely, the Remainer elites still in power have accepted EU membership was not a good call by now! Because the EU just treated UK as a cash cow, to leech off!

  3. DOM
    May 8, 2024

    Thank god for the private sector without which this nation would be utterly hollowed out. Meanwhile, the political state and those the limpet governing class does nothing except take and abuse the wealth creators and material providers.

    I tried to listen to Reeves yesterday, gave up after ten seconds and watched a video of a goldfish swimming around in a bowl for thirty minutes. The latter had more brains. She’s little more than a propagandist playing with peoples perceptions and expectations. A Maoist to the core

    If the gobshite Tories can’t expose Labour’s brainless clowns then there’s no hope

    I thought you Oxbridge types were supposed to be intelligent? Less brains than I have

    1. Peter Wood
      May 8, 2024

      Thanks Don, gave me a chuckle.
      I appreciate Sir J. is looking at our exports, the more the better, but to see the real picture we need to look at trade balances with those same partners.
      The issue many here have highlighted, that seemingly carries no weight in the PCP and Energy Sec. is energy trade balance. How much money and at what cost are we dependent on EU members? (We know the EU comes first when there’s trouble) How much oil, gas and especially electricity are we importing and how secure is it?
      Are we having to importing high quality steel and cement to build our infrastructure?
      Have we rebuilt our fishing fleets to catch our own fish?
      This is not about ‘little Britain’, this is about national security, employment and sustainability?

    2. Peter Wood
      May 8, 2024

      Looks like the EU Politburo has had it’s marching orders from Berlin to defend the German car industry:

      China’s subsidized products—such as electric vehicles and steel—“are flooding the European market,” but Beijing “continues to massively support its manufacturing sector” at a time of weak domestic demand, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen told reporters following a trilateral meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron and Xi on Monday. “The world cannot absorb China’s surplus production.”

      Should be interesting, see if bully China comes out.

      Shame our own National Parliament can’t stand up for our own industrial strengths…

      1. R.Grange
        May 9, 2024

        Why is China a bully? Why isn’t Britain a bully, for trying to pressure other countries into adopting its net zero ideology?

    3. formula57
      May 8, 2024

      @ DOM “..little more than a propagandist playing with peoples perceptions and expectations” – a trap you successfully avoid yourself, perhaps?

    4. Everhopeful
      May 8, 2024

      100% agree.
      The time for kid gloves is over…actually it was 14 years ago, at least.
      The oh so clever, know it alls should turn their finely honed spite onto the opposition ( is it? Or is it an ally?)
      Crush Labour before it’s too late.
      Dig for dirt…which is the usual MO. There must be so many horrific plans to disclose.
      Oh…they can’t though…’cos the tories have the SAME agenda!

    5. Lifelogic
      May 8, 2024

      The Tories not only cannot expose Labour’s brainless lies they, especially under May, Boris, Sunak have almost exactly the same wrongheaded policies.

      Most people though have one brain so if you or the fish has two or more you are well up. Sir Keir Starmer would doubtless says 99.9% or women have two brains.

      Though some scientists do think that:- Hidden in the walls of the digestive system, is “a brain in your gut” they call this little brain the enteric nervous system (ENS).

    6. Hope
      May 8, 2024

      Who would have thought the Tory party would want to rid the nation of personal responsibility and achievement by increasing welfare dependency and high taxation?

      It does not pay to work on low incomes, many examples where welfare is better than working.

      It does not pay to earn between £100-140,000 a year because Tories want to level everyone down with taxation! Tories want to level down education so it is awful for everyone, give university places to foreign students instead of prioritising UK students so they can steel best ideas to take home. This will drive the best and brightest away from our shores.

  4. Cliff.. Wokingham.
    May 8, 2024

    This is all good news Sir John and I am not surprised because I didn’t want to join the Common Market in the first place.
    The questions that need to be asked are..
    Why, if we are free to make our own rules and laws, do we still stick to the EU’s rules and laws? And…
    If everything is going so well, why do we all feel so poor and fed up?

    1. Lifelogic
      May 8, 2024

      Nor did I want to join though I was too young to vote in the Wilson “Common Market” and “I assure you there will be no loss of sovereignty” referendum. The Arguments of Benn, Castle, Powell, Shore, Foot, Jay, Varley… far more rational.

    2. Lifelogic
      May 8, 2024

      Why indeed do we not take advantage of the new freedoms? Why indeed? Why are we poor and fed up? Well we have suffered from net zero rip off energy, very high taxes, open door low skilled immigration depressing wages and causing housing shortages, big, wasteful and often corrupt government, crony capitalism, public services that are a sick joke, a dire NHS, net harm lockdowns, net harm vaccines.

      Then to cap it all the prospect to two or three terms of Labour with the same but even worse agenda.

      So Astrazeneca withdraw their Covid “vaccine” not due to the vaccine damage (they claim) but due to “lack of demand”. So why might there be a lack of demand people. ot wanting to be a victim perhaps? Might it be the large numbers v. seriously “vaccine” harmed often young people too? These high levels vaccines harms were picked up in Japan and elsewhere very early indeed & yet they kept inflicting them for years after that.

      Not safe, not effective and for most (certainly the young, children and those who had had Covid already) no benefit anyway – even had they been “unequivocally safe and effective”. Where is the criminal inquiry? Will compensation take 40 years like the contaminated blood scandal?

    3. Mitchel
      May 8, 2024

      Interesting tweet from the EU’s foreign policy chief,Josep Borrell,this week:

      “China has risen to superpower status.Middle powers-India,Brazil,South Africa,KSA-are emerging as important actors on the global stage.As Europe,we wanted to build a ring of friends and we are now surrounded by a ring of fire from Sahel to Middle East,Caucasus,Ukraine.”

      Is the mirage of EUtopia evaporating?To pick up on Borrell’s earlier analogy,is the ‘jungle’ reclaiming the’garden’?

      PS. The Brandenburg Gate never looked lovelier than last night;someone managed to hack into the illumination system and project the Soviet Victory banner from 1945 onto it ahead of Victory Day!

  5. Mike Wilson
    May 8, 2024

    Figures I’d like to see are: Total payments to EU, year by year, since 1997.

    1. Jazz
      May 8, 2024

      Indeed, net payments would be interesting

    2. Old Albion
      May 8, 2024

      That could well induce heart failure…………..

    3. Mick
      May 8, 2024

      You’ve a better chance to find a golden ticket in a Willie wonka bar as they releasing that information 🤣🤣🤣

    4. Ian wragg
      May 8, 2024

      And projected figures for the future.

    5. Everhopeful
      May 8, 2024

      According to HoC library in 14 Jun 2022 it was £12.6 billion ( does that sound like a rather conservative figure?) and that does not take into account the years when we were being fleeced but not full members ( and prob other adjustments). Assuming I read all correctly.
      Really…however many conclusions I come to about governments…at bottom I REALLY can not understand it at any level …nor can I even begin to imagine what goes through their (minds?)
      This must be what AI will/would be like.

      1. glen cullen
        May 8, 2024

        that’s a few pot-holes

    6. Lynn Atkinson
      May 8, 2024

      To the EU or to the EU countries? For instance we have given France a load of money to ‘stop the boats’. That does not count as money to the EU.
      Do you want to see the total money spent at the behest of the EU which we would otherwise not have spent included?

    7. Diane
      May 9, 2024

      Mike – £ to EU: Perhaps also incl. those fines they were / are so fond of ( how many, if any, are still ‘pending’ ? ) for our & others’ various infractions of ‘the rules’ – and not forgetting those ‘off balance sheet extras’ too ( recalling the £1.7bn extra demand when DC in office as just one )

  6. The Prangwizard
    May 8, 2024

    I’m all for Brexit and more, but can we have a wider report from time to time on what is our trade balance.

    What are our manufactures and energy import/exports?

    How much money leaves the country on dividend and surplus cash exports because of foreign ownership of businesses here? And how much do we bring home from our ownerships abroad?

  7. David Andrews
    May 8, 2024

    Unfortunately all that good work boosting exports is being compromised by higher energy costs, higher regulatory costs and higher taxes imposed by Conservative governments. It is not reflected in new finance flooding into UK equities, rather the reverse. It is reported that no less than £30 bn has been withdrawn from UK equity markets in the past year. Investment trusts have been switching their investments from UK companies to foreign companies. The low savings rate and widespread hostility to private enterprise bodes ill for the future. The UK will become even more reliant on foreign investment and all that implies to finance risk investments and to protect national interests. These trends will be amplified under a Labour government.

  8. Hat man
    May 8, 2024

    Yes, Sir John, the Cameron government’s ‘Project Fear’ campaign in 2016 was lying propaganda. The trouble is, more and more people since then have begun to ask themselves what other government messaging is lying propaganda. Levelling up? Covid? Net Zero? Project Ukraine? All of it? The Tories need to ask themselves what they are really achieving that will win public support. You don’t seem to be able to convince the public you can do the job, basically. Hundreds of millions spent in support for households faced by the cost-of-living crisis should have played in the government’s favour, but it doesn’t seem to have been talked about much. The government could address the housing crisis by a moratorium on migration, but the legal establishment won’t allow that. Sunak and co. have mitigated the policies on EVs and gas boilers slightly, but the longer-term threat remains unchanged. Your best winning strategy in my view would be to repeal the Climate Change Act, then a lot of economic benefits would flow from doing that, but have your leaders got the balls to go for it?

  9. Sir Joe Soap
    May 8, 2024

    If our trade position is so good then why is your government taxing and borrowing more than ever?
    Why is our currency weaker versus the US dollar and Swiss Franc than it was in 2014-2015 with interest rates either as high or higher than both?
    Perhaps trade has increased dramatically but margins have collapsed? Not such a good look then.
    Markets don’t lie.

  10. Ian B
    May 8, 2024

    Sir John
    As always you are correct.
    However, this Conservative Government, the establishment is still fighting, still wishing it was under the EU’s complete control – the refused to get ‘Brexit Done’
    ‘The UK did roll over all the EU trade deals into UK trade deals’ and also roll over all EU Laws without discussion or democratic oversite for fear of upsetting their bosses in Brussels.
    Which means we the UK for the most part loses out, we still have to much un-democratic control, to much manipulation of democracy and freedoms. (that later part is 100% this governments doing by design) Is it because this Conservative Government refuses its job, refuses to manage or are the bereft of what it means to govern, don’t know what it means to not just listen but hear the people they serve? With everything that needs to be done to fully move forward this Conservative Government goes with any un represented body to the exclusion of the electorate.

  11. Bloke
    May 8, 2024

    Being free allows us to choose what we prefer and to do it. Those in the EU are stuck tolerating the hump of the camel their committee of members designed weighing them down.
    The incompetent Treasury, Bank of England, obstructive civil service and Remain party losers still try to claim they were right to hamper us. Gradually the effect of those nuisances will fade into nothingness. A new government should sort that out with Reform, or even just reform.

  12. Javelin
    May 8, 2024

    All the real power lies in the regulators and watchdogs. MPs can’t even get their potholes filled.

  13. Bryan Harris
    May 8, 2024

    That is all good news — I had been wondering what was driving the growth in the FTSE All Share index. It has been doing well of late.

    What we need now is for HMG to reverse its very damaging economic policies, stop sending vast sums abroad for a variety of lost cause, and do something about taxation.

    We might just then be able to take advantage of this rise in exports.

    What is the state of imports?

  14. formula57
    May 8, 2024

    This news will of course not be welcome in the homes of the guilty.

    Is this government too rotten to proclaim this success?

  15. Narrow Shoulders
    May 8, 2024

    Exports went up because of increased immigration into the EU requiring more goods.

    Imports went up because increased immigration into the UK requiring more goods.

    Very few people are better off than they would be without excess immigration. Please encourage GDP per head, availability of housing, schools, health provision and disposable income to become more important KPIs of the economy than straight GDP which is meaningless. More people consume more.

    1. Paula
      May 9, 2024


      We all feel poorer and our roads are turning to gravel. Immigration and crime is through the roof.

      The Tories are unable to avoid the blame for all of this so will be annihilated. A few tens of their MPs left maybe.

  16. Iain Moore
    May 8, 2024

    Something you won’t hear reported on the BBC, it doesn’t fit their narrative that Brexit was an unmitigated disaster.

  17. glen cullen
    May 8, 2024

    That’s great news, could we please proceed with brexit, at least start by repealing EU laws and regulations

  18. Original Richard
    May 8, 2024

    “They also asserted it would damage our trade to leave.”

    Although one Tory MP asserted on the BBC’s Question Time that all trade with the EU would stop I got the impression at the time, perhaps from reading the Guardian, that the main opposition to Brexit came from the increased difficulties with travel to the EU and the owning of second homes in Tuscany.

    1. Original Richard
      May 8, 2024

      PS : Oh, yes, and where they were now going to get their gardners and nannies.

  19. Paula
    May 8, 2024

    Chronic mass immigration is killing all of those gains. People feel worse off and hopeless and the country looks worse off – especially our roads and law and order.

    A little while back we had Anne Widdecombe telling us “If you can’t afford a cheese sandwich then don’t eat a cheese sandwich.” That is not what we expected her to be saying in Brexit Britain after flouncing out of the EU Parliament with a silly little flag in hand.

    Have there been deals with large countries that we must accept their poor in return for trade ? Is this why immigration (the reason for Brexit) has gone through the roof since 2016 ?

    Are we now adrift in a sea of sharks ?

    Your party faces extinction. Are you even aware of this ?

  20. Paul
    May 8, 2024

    Interesting numbers in this diary-can we have the source please?

    Reply UK government trade figures

  21. Lynn Atkinson
    May 8, 2024

    When one takes into account that the EU is itself a much smaller trading entity than it was then the increase is even more impressive.
    What a pity the political class suffer from Russophobia, because we could have increased trade substantially in that sector. Instead we have banned ourselves from selling them anything but continue to buy £2.4 B oil and gas from them.
    No businessman would have done such a thing. And we would have had good relations with our old anti-fascist ally. The best ever.

  22. Bert+Young
    May 8, 2024

    I have always considered the EU to be a lost cause of unity; the disparity of economics , language , and many different national characteristics that existed and still pertain today all spell out why it will never succeed as an integrated whole . We are linked to Europe geographically but that is as far as it goes ; wars forced the EU to exist in the first place but the dominant influence in both cases was the USA and the one time effort to cement a permanent economic Atlantic alliance failed . There is ample evidence that Northern European countries do have common characteristics but attempting to link other Southern and other area countries into an integrated whole with them is and will always be a non starter . NATO is a proof that certain links are justified and we must always support this .

  23. a-tracy
    May 8, 2024

    With inflation, the £600bn would be the equivalent of £788bn BOE inflation calculator so £862bn is better but not as impressive as at first glance.

    The EU deal struck by your government wasn’t as good as it should have been, you hadn’t prepared for the costs immediately implemented on UK to EU exports and still you are struggling to implement quid pro quo charges. JRM warns against doing so, what do you think John?

  24. ChrisS
    May 8, 2024

    We have to ask why the news reports totally fail to say what is really happening after Brexit.
    It has to be because the Civil Service, which comes up with the figures, are Remainers, almost to a man or woman !

    Then there are the reporters, especially at the BBC and Sky News, who are also Remainers.
    Then there are government ministers. With almost the sole exception of Kemi Badenoch, they totally fail to tell a positive story of what is happening in our economy. I doubt whether they will even make a good case once the election campaign starts !

    Keep up the good work, SIr John. It’s so sad that hardly anyone is listening.

  25. Rita
    May 8, 2024

    As an ardent Brexiteer, i, like many others, felt cheated of the Brexit we envisaged, so it’s good to hear some good has come from it. I trust SME’s (the backbone of this country) are benefiting from any changes which may have been achieved.

    The big loser as i see it is the Union. The betrayal of Northern Ireland, starting with the NIP and finished-off by the Windsor Framework, is one of the worst aspects of the watered-down Brexit we got. Better brains than mine have consistently stated the technology exists for there to be no need of any kind of border. Well, here we are, with a union hanging by a thread. Sad.

    The other even bigger issue in that it impacts more people is the fact our borders have not been secured, (except one way, not our way) we are not in control of them and no serious or sensible legislation/action to deal with this issue is forthcoming.

    Still, you have given us some good news. Thank you Sir.

  26. Rita
    May 8, 2024

    As an ardent Brexiteer, i, like many others, felt cheated of the Brexit we envisaged, so it’s good to hear some good has come from it. I trust SME’s (the backbone of this country) are benefiting from any changes which may have been achieved.

    The big loser as i see it is the Union. The betrayal of Northern Ireland, starting with the NIP and finished-off by the Windsor Framework, is one of the worst aspects of the watered-down Brexit we got. Better brains than mine have consistently stated the technology exists for there to be no need of any kind of hard (or sea) border. Well, here we are, with a union hanging by a thread. Sad.

    The other even bigger issue in that it impacts more people is the fact our borders have not been secured, (except one way, not our way) we are not in control of them and no serious or sensible legislation/action to deal with this issue is forthcoming.

    Still, you have given us some good news. Thank you Sir.

  27. Dave Andrews
    May 8, 2024

    Thank you Sir John for bringing to our attention some good news regarding UK trade; a refreshing change from all the bad news we get.
    Remain was really about romanticism for a beloved EU, they just made out it was trade because they thought that would persuade more people to vote for their false utopia. People voted to leave because they wanted freedom and independence. Most people who voted to remain did so because of project Fear, which is a contemptuous voting motive.

  28. Derek
    May 8, 2024

    Oh dear, a bad day for the die-hard Remainers. Facts always win arguments, and after these new stats, the Europhiles have bitten their tongues. However, I doubt we’ll hear them announcing that, “They got it wrong”, for such magnanimous gestures are not in their DNA.

  29. The Prangwizard
    May 8, 2024

    How much would we have if a Sovereign Fund had been set up when we left and the equivalent of what we had been giving to the EU was put in it?

    1. a-tracy
      May 9, 2024

      Prangwizard, we’ve only just stopped paying in like we were in the EU – the transition agreement – some people call the divorce bill, the UK has agreed to pay the EU to cover its financial obligations for leaving. The UK extended and it took until 1 Jan 21 to free us from the transition period; however, several costs remained. Some estimates by the BBC said this figure we handed over to the EU amounted to £42.5bn.,UK's%20obligation%20for%20EU%20pensions.
      The BBC reported that the OBR said the net payments would be:
      2021 around £7bn
      2022 £5.5bn
      2023 £3bn
      2024 £1bn
      2025 £750,000 m

      That’s why they need Starmer’s party to re-align us and sign a cooperation agreement to start paying back in again ASAP, as only around nine members pay in more than they take out and they’ve taken on big debts near euros 900bn .

      In 2018/19 the net membership contribution alone was estimated to be £10.8bn. How much do you think it would have been for each year since that time five years ago?

      If we had stayed in, we would not only be coping with the dinghy crossers that France facilitates so they don’t stop there, but we’d also have free movement from the rest of the EU. We’d be paying their Erasum free tuition in Scotland, providing loans for maintenance and complete costs to study in England, most of which, unless the grads stay and work here, which we’re told they’re not aren’t then able to get the 9% tax charge on their wages.

    2. Mark
      May 9, 2024

      Sovereign funds are for countries with budget surpluses. If we had held our budget deficit to be lower by the equivalent of our EU contributions then our debt would be correspondingly lower, plus the interest we wouldn’t have paid out on financing it. However, like all governments since 1997, they have found ways to spend huge sums of money as wastefully as possible for the most part. Net zero, immigration subsidy, rail subsidy (Inc. HS2), lower public sector productivity in health, education, civil service, defence…

      My grandparents’ generation were fond of the saying “Look after the pennies and the pounds take care of themselves.” I wonder what they would ave recommended for sums in the 10s and 100s of billions.

  30. Mark
    May 9, 2024

    The government has an interesting plan to lower our import bill. The imposition of the quota tax on non EV sales means that manufacturers are deciding simply not to sell the cars people actualky want. Since these are almost entirely imported, our import bill goes down as we slide towards a Cuban future.

    It has already damaged our motor exports with policies that have seen most production transferred abroad and shut down here.

    The same applies to dispatchable electricity for which we rely increasingly on interconnectors. The problem with that is that Europe has a similar plan, and we are guaranteed to reach the position where there is insufficient capacity to go round. As we saw in the energy crisis, prices are then no longer determined by cost of marginal supply, but by the level which prices out demand to the available production. Rationing by price and quota.

    Net zero lies behind both these disasters. Cancel it.

    1. Mickey Taking
      May 9, 2024

      Most new car sales are not essential anyway. There are far too many on our roads, or almost an exhibition piece on a drive. If owners/leasing companies must sell, buy a 2/3 year old at a great drop from new.
      Suits the greens, reduces imports, eases strain on the pocket and should give the owner a sense of responsibility to help the planet.

  31. Peter Parsons
    May 9, 2024

    Why is this article based on comparing 2016 to 2024? For around half that time, the UK remained a member of the EU and the barriers to trade that were erected on 31st January 2020 and last week were not in place.

    Is there a reason why 2016 is used rather than 31st January 2020? Do the figures from 31st January 2020 not support the desired political narrative?

    My experience was that Brexit and the Brexit vote certainly impacted business negatively. In the company I worked for, at the time of the referendum, the UK division was comfortably the biggest division in Europe by business volume. By 2019, the UK division had dropped to #3, falling behind France and some distance behind Germany. As I was being told by customers in 2017/2018 “London is Legacy”. Companies were still investing, but that investment shifted from London to Frankfurt, to Paris etc. UK business divisions were put into “maintenance mode” and much of that shift has remained in my industry today.

    Reply Because Remain said the damage would occur on announcement of the result. Trade has continued to grow since we left. Apologise.

  32. Bill Smith
    May 9, 2024

    Sir John,

    Trade has grown significantly across the world since Covid, so it would be strange if our trade with the rest of the world would not have grown as well. The Transpacific agreement still needs to be seen as we are not well placed with goods trade to that part of the world, which is why trade with the EU is still very important.
    On the Brexit issue I do not think one camp was much better or worse than the other.
    On our performance we are still expected by the IMF to be the country with the least growth during 2024 in the G7 so I would say our performance is not great and Brexit has not helped

    Reply Remain need to apologise. They forecast falling trade and a big rise in unemployment. The opposite happened

    1. Bill Smith
      May 9, 2024

      I will allow myself to disagree both sides were lying through their teeth and the Brexiters should apologize for not using the opportunities they told us would be available after the Brexit decision

      Reply I did not lie about Brexit and you should withdraw that false accusation. Remain MPs acted together to block seizing Brexit freedoms.

      1. Bill Smith
        May 10, 2024

        Sir John,

        I am not going to lower myself to this level of debate.

        Reply Happy for you to take your Remain spin and endless poorly based criticisms elsewhere

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