Daniel Hannan sets out a good agenda for the UK’s new relationship with the EU


Reforming Britain’s relationship with the EU could boost trade, reveals Daniel Hannan MEP in a new report Britain and the EU: A Solution, published by the Centre for Policy Studies on Friday 12 December.

Pointing to Switzerland, the MEP explains that despite the country not being a member, Swiss exports to the EU in 2013 were 450 per cent per capita what Britain’s were.

Hannan writes:

“There is no reason that the British couldn’t do even better than the Swiss. Britain is 63 million people to Norway’s 5 million and Switzerland’s 8 million. Britain runs a massive trade deficit with the EU (but a surplus with the rest of the world). On the day Britain left, the country would become the EU’s single biggest market, accounting for 21 per cent of its exports – more than its second and third largest markets (the US and Japan) combined.”

With UK opinion polls increasingly favouring a free trade relationship with the EU that does not involve political amalgamation, the author sets out nine objectives for the Government:

1. Fiscal freedom from the EU
No financial transactions taxes, no green levies, no EU airport duties and no harmonisation of VAT.

2. UK citizenship
Britain should disapply the EU Citizenship that was created by the Maastricht Treaty in 1992. There should be no automatic assumption of mutual voting entitlements, residence rights or social security claims.

3. No Common Agricultural Policy (CAP)
Britain is penalised both positively and negatively by the CAP, paying more into it and getting less out.

4. No Common Fisheries Policy
Around 60 per cent of North Sea fish are in British territorial waters. But, under the CFP, Britain’s quota is equivalent to 25 per cent by volume or 15 per cent by value.

5. Independent diplomacy
Britain should pull out of the European External Action Service – the EU’s diplomatic corps. Close intergovernmental links with European neighbours should of course be retained, as well as the military obligations that go with NATO membership.

6. Common law, not EU law
Britain should withdraw from the EU’s Area of Freedom Security and Justice – that is, the common judicial space created in 1998, within which a shared legal code is enforced by a European magistracy (Eurojust) and police force (Europol).

7. British social policy
All employment laws and social policies from the European Union should be returned.

8. Supremacy of Parliament
Sections 2 and 3 of the 1972 European Communities Act should be repealed or amended so that EU law no longer has automatic precedence over UK law on UK territory.

9. Reform of Immigration Policy
New European immigrants should not receive unemployment benefit until they have been in the UK for a minimum of one year.


  1. Mark B
    December 12, 2014

    Good morning.

    Beware of strangers baring gifts !

    The ‘Swiss Option’ although seems reasonable and ideal at first, is in fact nothing but a political Tar Pit. Why ?

    Because for 40 plus years, the UK has slowly been moving in the direction of ‘Ever Closer UNION’ with other Member States of what is now the EU. The UK Government has, without the full knowledge, free will, and consent of the British people, been handing ever increasing responsibility to the European Superstate. And to put it bluntly, we cannot simply leave the EU without first negotiating suitable arrangements outside the EU first. To do so, would take a very longtime. And it is time we do not have !

    The only sensible option I have seen, is that proposed by Dr. Richard North. His Flexit proposal is both thorough and detailed, if predictably, a little long.

    That is why I support (100%) leaving the EU in controlled measured stages.

    1) Issue of an Article 50 Declaration. This ‘forces’ the EU to negotiate a new relationship.

    2) Apply to become members of EFTA.

    3) Seek a part of our new relationship with the EU, continued membership of the EEA. We will not get all that we want. But this is not an end in itself, but part of an on going process.

    4) Find what laws that we do not want and that can be repealed, and repeal them.

    And so on.

    Hannan’s idea would mire the UK with so much negotiation, that it would take decades before we leave.

    The Greenland example is a good one. They left under the old EEC but, their was much wrangling. Under the Lisbon Treaty, the UK could rely on clauses which stipulate how those in the negotiation must behave. If they break the rules, we leave with EEA membership intact. If they go over the two year mark, and do not get an extension, we leave with EEA intact. EEA is the Single Market. It is NOT the political side of the EU. It covers the Four Freedoms and, allows trade to continue. It is not perfect but, it must be seen as part of a journey to becoming, once again, a full and free sovereign nation.

    The only thing I would take from the Swiss, would be their style of democracy – TRUE DEMOCRACY ! Currently, referendums are by gift of Parliament and the Government. And even then, only if they can be reasonably assured of the right result. If, and they may suspect, a result would not be to the Government’s or Parliaments liking, then it simply withholds the right of the people to choose, irrespective of whether or not others have had been given something. The results of which, are not legally binding. In fact, a Political Party seeking re-election has, and can, insert into their manifesto’s a promise to hold a referendum on any issue. But once again, as we now know, this too is not legally binding.


    PS My apologies to both our kind host and to my fellow readers on the length of this post. But some things really do need to be said.

  2. Brian Taylor
    December 12, 2014

    This sounds fine I take it that Article 50 has been the starting point for this, and that we will have two years to sort out the fine print, and we will be in both the EEA and EFTA to protect our free trade.
    This is very similar to Owen Paterson and the writings of Richard North and there must be a coming together of all like minded people to combat the BBC, CBI and others to put the case for the UK outside the EU otherwise we will lose the referendum vote!!!!!

    1. Lifelogic
      December 12, 2014

      CBI, big multinational business that is got at, the BBC, the lefty loss making media, most of the civil service, a large part of Universities, many charities, LibLabCon/Green ………

      1. Hope
        December 12, 2014

        One big problem, Cameron and most of the Tory party wants to be in the EU and want the UK to be a regional province of it.

        There can be no doubt when you hear the likes of Cameron, Clarke, May, Osborne, Heseltine etc. that they are Europhiles through and through. I am so surprised there is any doubt in JR’s mind.

        Taxpayers’ money used to promote closer union to the EU, EAW of no value to protecting UK citizens, it does not stop convicted criminals entering the UK and commuting further crime, EU is a leech on the taxpayer, plus all the detriments Hannan describes. But the politicos knew this when they deceitfully signed the UK up to this socialist construct. What has Cameron done about the EU stealing money from Cypiot citizens, coups of sovereign governments? This has happened during his premiership when he witters on about about how other countries are governed.

        1. Lifelogic
          December 15, 2014


  3. Gary
    December 12, 2014

    The old buzzwords: Switzerland and Norway. What Hannan conveniently forgets is that Switzerland has pegged the franc to the euro. Is that what he really wants? And as for Norway, they have so much oil wealth, they don’t need anybody, except to buy their oil. We have none.

    Hannan wants us in a union, just not the EU. He wants us in union with the USA.


    Problem is, he and his mates are unaware that the USA is even more economically unsustainable than the EU. The USA is now in a permanent state of war to try and defend the reserve dollar with over 700 foreign bases and over $5trillion spent in Iraq and Afghanistan. When, not if, the reserve dollar falls, America is finished.

    Is that really the partnership that he wants ?

    Economics, outside of mercantilism through the barrel of a gun, is not the neocons’ strong point.

    1. Tom William
      December 12, 2014

      Read your quote again. He doesn’t say this at all.

    2. Lifelogic
      December 12, 2014

      “Switzerland has pegged the franc to the euro” – Yes but only to stop it rising too high (given the mess the EURO area is in) and they can change their minds on this at any time they chose to. As Switzerland, unlike the UK, is still a democracy – albeit one rather surrounded and under siege.

      We at least have sea borders.

      1. Gary
        December 12, 2014

        abandoning a peg can be just as difficult as raising rates, because in this case that is exactly what the effect will be.

    3. forthurst
      December 12, 2014

      “Hannan wants us in a union, just not the EU. He wants us in union with the USA.”

      I do not think he was calling for a political union although his opinions regarding the USA and the ‘anglosphere’ are undeniably eccentric; what he wants is TTIP: no thank you!

      What is best about the USA is in its past, particularly its constitution which, however, Hannan believes is still being honoured today, despite that it has proven to be no defence against those who have been determined to subvert it by the wielding of financial clout toward the installation of puppets to high office.

    4. Denis Cooper
      December 12, 2014

      A total, shameless, misrepresentation of what Hannan said in that article:

      “The flaw in the Shavian fantasy of full amalgamation is, of course, that Americans are as jealous of their sovereignty as any people on Earth. Look at their (justified) suspicion of the United Nations. Look at their reticence vis-à-vis NAFTA. Do you really imagine that they’d accept a political union with 60 million Britons?

      Just for the record, what we Atlanticists want is not a merger, but a free trade area. We’d like an organic, not a governmental union; ties between citizens, businesses and civic associations, not a combination of state structures. And we aim for it to embrace, not just Britain and the US, but the community of free English-speaking democracies – the Anglosphere.”

      1. Gary
        December 14, 2014

        you can’t read.I said Hannan wanted a union with the USA.

        1. Denis Cooper
          December 15, 2014

          I can read, I read what you wrote and it was perfectly clear what you were trying to convey with your “Hannan wants us in a union, just not the EU. He wants us in union with the USA.”

    5. Simon
      December 12, 2014

      It should be said that Switzerland has pegged the franc to the Euro because of the strength of the Franc not the strength of the Euro.

  4. Mick
    December 12, 2014

    Or we could just leave the dreaded EU

    1. Duyfken
      December 12, 2014

      I am sure that is the logical way to tackle the problem. All the points made by Mr Hannan, and effectively endorsed by JR, are just what we need. However there is really little likelihood of these aims being achieved without the UK demonstrating its determination – in the form of notice given under Article 50. The default position should be our remaining on the outside unless the EU can tempt us into some forms of mutually beneficial cooperation.

      Our government and in particular our PM have provided a poor record in negotiating skills and it would be irresponsible to allow that team to lead the discussions on the needed restoration of this country’s sovereignty, without there being the stick that notice under Article 50 would provide.

  5. Peter van Leeuwen
    December 12, 2014

    Performing better than Switzerland or performing worse than now in terms of trade with the EU after Brexit seem both rather speculative.
    What I could see happening is that the EU will build a single market for services excluding mighty Brexit-Britain, if need be building on the fiscal compact which already excludes Britain. It would be similar to the period 1952 – 1972 when the Common Market developed without Britain at the table.

    1. DaveM
      December 12, 2014

      That’s fine by me Peter.

      I’m sure you’ve been in a situation where you’ve been working with lots of clever people with good funding and a clear agenda, and who are happy to (and want to) take you with them provided you toe their path. However, those people don’t always quite understand you (or your requirements) 100%.

      I know I have, and I know that many times I’ve thought “I could do better by myself”. That’s kind of how a lot of people in the UK think at the minute, and I for one am not afraid to go it alone. We’ve managed OK by ourselves before and we could manage OK by ourselves again.

      The whole issue of Brexit – despite what the pro-EU economist MPs think – is down to self-determination and sovereignty. The only people who think of the EU in terms of a tool to enrich themselves are the ones who are rich enough already. Most people just see it as another burden and an unwanted meddling bureaucracy forcing immigration on their towns and cities, destroying their landscapes with wind farms, and making them wear high-vis vests all the time.

      1. Peter van Leeuwen
        December 16, 2014

        @DaveM: I realise that many British people, “informed” by their media, can only see the EU as a burden. I’m not going to list the advantages that EU membership brings, also for ordinary people, I leave that to your countrymen. If they cannot make a convincing case for EU membership, so be it, not my problem.

    2. Mondeo Man
      December 12, 2014

      Peter – What is saving our ‘mighty’ country is what we don’t have in common with the EU rather that what we do (the Euro.)

      I like to think I’m a typical commenter here. I don’t hanker for mightiness but for freedom, proper democratic representation and fairness for our people.

      No-one denies that there would be unpleasantness for us in leaving the EU. What no-one admits is that there is – and will be – unpleasantness for us in remaining. The average Brit is going to keep getting poorer and see his quality of life decline as has been happening in recent years due to overcrowding and downward pressure on wages.

      I believe that we were wrong to enter the EU and that we were wrong to become dependent on our service sector. Both have been against the will of the British people, I believe.

      1. Peter van Leeuwen
        December 12, 2014

        I wouldn’t mind Britain doing very well after a Brexit. The more wealth you’ll have the more flowers and Gouda cheese we’ll export to you, or maybe we can help you build affordable housing, floating in the Thames. 🙂 And we won’t become permanent immigrants!
        Whether your decision to leave would be wise, there we differ. But we won’t stop trading.

      2. libertarian
        December 12, 2014

        Mondeo Man

        I agree with 95% of your post however I’ve no idea what you think is bad about relying on service sector. Maybe you don’t understand what the service sector is?

        It generates 78% of total GDP. The UK is the worlds 2nd largest exporter of services just behind the USA. 15% of total GDP is generated from service sector exports. Its the 21st century and you don’t think we should rely on software, IT, digital, Ecommerce, film, music, accounting, insurance as well as financial services etc 27 million people are employed in the service sector in the UK

        So what do you think we should rely on?

    3. forthurst
      December 12, 2014

      The effect on our trade balance with the EU post exit is hard to predict. It is however possible to predict that we would not be taking instructions on what our farmers would otherwise wish to produce and paying foreign farmers to make up the deficit, nor would we have to purchase some of our fish back from the Cornelis Vrolijk, a dutch trawler which has been awarded by the EU, 23% of our fishing grounds’ quotas.

      It may well be that the EU would prefer Frankfurt to become more important than London, if only to justify a claim that the EU, originally a French racket is now run by Germany.

      1. Peter van Leeuwen
        December 12, 2014

        This Cornelis ‘Cheerful’ will surely find other fishing grounds and if not he might turn to tourism. When I look at the harbour of my town of birth (Scheveningen) there are many more yachts and offered sailing trips than when I was a child. Fishermen had to adapt and did so. Complying with EU rules has not stopped the Netherlands to become a major agricultural exporter. That won’t likely change, with or without the UK in the EU

    4. libertarian
      December 12, 2014

      Peter vL

      “What I could see happening is that the EU will build a single market for services excluding mighty Brexit-Britain”

      Oh dear Peter, you are seriously telling me the EU will ban our service industries so that you don’t show our films, play our popular music, allow our football teams to compete or indeed any EU players to play in England? The EU will ban the purchase of services and goods from UK Ecommerce sites. Thats not mentioning expelling the 1200 Banks and financial service companies in the UK. You won’t allow us to visit any of your countries as tourists or exchange our pounds for your Euros etc etc etc Ok if you say so…….

      1. Peter van Leeuwen
        December 13, 2014

        @libertarian: Misunderstanding about what a Single Market is? We don’t ban American films etc. do we? Neither do we ban American goods. Still, America is not part of our Single Market and import duties will be paid.

        1. libertarian
          December 14, 2014

          Peter vL

          EXACTLY, that was my point we DON’T NEED the EU in order to export our services to you. There aren’t import duties on services !!

          1. Peter van Leeuwen
            December 15, 2014

            @libertarian: Apart from VAT no duties/taxes for you inside the EU but why should that have to remain the same once you’re gone. Taxes aren’t the only way that services inside the EU may be given an advantage above those from outside. Apparently the single market for services still needs to be completed and obviously it will give advantage to those countries that are part of that single market.

          2. libertarian
            December 15, 2014

            Peter vL

            I guess you just don’t understand business, If you levied huge taxes on people selling music or films or Ecommerce services into the EU it would be the EU citizens who pay duh !!!!

            Then of course if you tried to bully China, USA , UK and others with aggressive restrictions on trade you would rapidly find yourself on the receiving end of reciprocal action.

            Peter (wORDS LEFT OUT ED) I know you don’t understand free markets but at least try to be consistent with your own posts even if they are nonsense. The EU ISN’T a single market its a Customs Union

  6. Lifelogic
    December 12, 2014

    Indeed this is surely all very obvious to all but the Ken Clark/Cameron wing, the BBC Labour and the Libdums.

    What exactly is driving Cameron in completely the opposite direction? He and his EU phile wing give no rational reasons. They just states that his heart and soul believes in ever more EU why have they got any rational reasons? If so why not state them?

    Huge motorist mugging profits for councils announced today I hear. Yet another of those “public services” they kindly deliver. All those bloated state sector pensions to pay, so better buy some more camera cars and get some more motorist mugging staff. The 20% (remunerated at 150% more than the private sector) is largely living off the persecution and mugging of the 80% in the private sector one way or another. While delivering fairly appalling and largely totally unwanted public “services”.

    1. Lifelogic
      December 12, 2014

      £549 Million “profit” (just the profit mind) from motorist mugging last year perhaps 30 million people being mugged by the councils who are supposed to be serving the public. What cheer these public servant bring to everyone. Many it seems mothers and fathers trying to drop their children safely at school for a few seconds but then mugged by expensive state sector camera cars.

      Will MPs actually do something about this or will the out of control LEA muggers by allowed to continue their legalised mugging?

      It does not seem likely that the country will get richer by employing one section of the population to mug another section in this way. What respectable person would even accept such a job?

    2. Max Dunbar
      December 12, 2014

      It’s really the other way around – the creative heart has to ‘service’ the obese statist body.

    3. stred
      December 13, 2014

      Have a look at the TFL modernisation of roads info. Investment will be mainly in junction ‘improvements’ including new bike lanes, traffic lights and better ‘safety’ cameras.

      1. Lifelogic
        December 13, 2014

        Junction improvements for the past 20 years or so has just meant blocking the road to private cars (unless they are Ministers, police, top bureaucrats or Boris cars one assumes). Rather like the Zil lanes

  7. Ian wragg
    December 12, 2014

    But a distant dream. With the Liblabcon fully signed up to a federal Europe and intent on granting passports to a quarter million of the world’s population annually it will never happen.
    Funny now Nigel is doing well how you’re all talking tough on Europe but that’s all it is, talk.
    Do we have to give passports to all and sundry
    Is it yet another EU requirement?
    Are we in control of anything.

    1. Lifelogic
      December 12, 2014

      We heard it all from Cameron four and a half years ago. He ratted on it all, why should we trust him now were know what he is and where his heart and soul lie. Even recently he pushed us into the dreadful EU extradition abomination.

  8. Narrow Shoulders
    December 12, 2014

    Eminently sensible and difficult to refute in my opinion. I would add in work, child and housing benefits to the one year eligibility for ALL immigrants in 9 and would need to see a reason why a Brit could not be trained to do the job before any work permits were issued. There is no reason why the cost of construction should be growing by paying (imported) bricklayers £1000 per week to combat under supply.

    Noteworthy that this report has not made the main stream media as at 8 AM on the morning of release. Those reports telling us of the positive contribution of the EU and immigration are immediately thrust into the spotlight.

    Are you booked to appear anywhere Mr Redwood?

    Reply I will be at various events in Wokingham over Christmas.

    1. stred
      December 13, 2014

      Some wealthy bricklayer was on LBC the other day complaining that it takes 3 years to train a bricklayer well enough to be used by his agency. The best bricklayer I ever came across was a painter and decorator who picked up the skill helping his mates. Winston Churchill seemed to take to it too.

      1. Lifelogic
        December 13, 2014

        The three year training is usually just a way of paying them less as they are still a “trainee”.

  9. alan jutson
    December 12, 2014

    Makes you wonder why politicians ever wanted to take us in, and want to remain in, if there are so many benefits in being out.

    Why is it that I do not see Cameron, Clegg, or Miliband standing up for the UK, or even attempting to negotiate hard, instead we get wishy washy words, double speak, innuendo, and a so called promise by one of them, that we will get a referendum sometime in 2017 if we trust them with complete power for the next 5 years.

    Given the last four years, chances are that we will be run by Labour and the SNP shortly, due to the fiasco of promises made in Scotland, for Scotland.

    I simply do not hold up much hope of us getting out anytime soon, after all, a leopard does not change its spots does it.

    Keep up the work JR, never know yourself and a few of your like minded colleagues may eventually get some traction with the majority of Mp’s, but until then we can only live on hope.

    1. Lifelogic
      December 12, 2014

      The benefits of being in are all for the Career Politicians and bureaucrats – not the private sector workers nor the public.

      That is why they wanted to be in.

  10. Excalibur
    December 12, 2014

    A well thought out set of proposals by Daniel Hannan, JR. As an EU anti, I would support these measures. But why have we not heard such a concrete course of action from CMD ?

    1. Lifelogic
      December 12, 2014

      Because Cameron is concretely for staying in but for lying to voters near elections.

  11. Old Albion
    December 12, 2014

    It all sounds wonderful doesn’t it? There is a significant omission however.
    How much would the (dis)UK pay into the EU for this? and, Mrs Merkel and chums won’t allow it anyway.
    In/out is the only choice.

    1. Denis Cooper
      December 12, 2014

      Why should the UK pay anything for the privilege of running a massive trade deficit with the remainder of the EU? Arguably it should be the other way round, they should pay us for access to our market.

      1. Lifelogic
        December 12, 2014


  12. JoolsB
    December 12, 2014


    With respect, as important as this matter is, I am more interested at the moment in a solution to the relationship between the UK and England. Your party has gone very silent again on EVEL. What has happened to Hague’s review which he promised to report back on by now ? Instead we have heard nothing. Will he even report back this side of Christmas, or even this side of the election, or is it parked back in the long grass in the hope we have all forgotten about it?

    If so, the Tories are taking the English for fools John – big mistake!

    Reply White Paper next week

    1. DaveM
      December 12, 2014

      I too am more interested in this than anything else, but we need to exit the EU first I think.

  13. agricola
    December 12, 2014

    Sounds about right, one always gets clear thinking from Daniel. In terms of our relationship with the EU what will remain apart from trade. Perhaps this could be clarified. So the next step would seem to be to invoke Article 50 and negotiate where we deem cooperation to be of mutual benefit.

  14. Alan Wheatley
    December 12, 2014

    What is left that constitutes being “in” the EU?

  15. waramess
    December 12, 2014

    This is a pipe dream and will not be available. There is absolutely no doubt that it is completely unattainable unless and until the UK leaves the EU.

    Stop Cameron and others from having the luxury of prevarication and get on with the job of having a referendum and then, if the electorate so wish, getting out of the EU with immediate effect. Absolutely worthless having Europhiles, Eurosceptics and the inbetweeens. It is not clever nor measured.

    The UK is IN or it is OUT. Never have the EU made anything more clear so, just get over it.

  16. oldtimer
    December 12, 2014

    Sounds good to me.

  17. Know-Dice
    December 12, 2014

    So, from a trading point of view the EU needs us more than we need it…

    Not sure if “(but a surplus with the rest of the world)” is correct – surely we import more from China than they take from us?

    Question Time last night: only sensible contributor for me was Camilla Cavendish although Nigel Farage seemed to hold his own against a hostile audience.

    Labour women mentioned the “Mansion Tax” as being the saviour of the NHS – I reckon freeing up all that wasted money sent to the EU could help the NHS…

    1. Lifelogic
      December 12, 2014

      Funny how some lefty woman complained about men interrupting women, then spent the rest of the program interrupting everyone.

      Fararge was sensible, right and even popular with most of the audience. Amazing given the usual nature of BBC audiences – stuffed with moronic lefty rent a mob.

      Why do we get Russell Brand on? The man cannot even string a coherent sentence together let alone any coherent argument?

  18. M Davis
    December 12, 2014

    Sounds good to the uninitiated. Wonder what RAE North thinks about it!

  19. Leslie Singleton
    December 12, 2014

    Sounds great to me and the sooner the better

    1. Bob
      December 12, 2014

      Yes, it sounds good, but that’s where it ends. Daniel is not the Tory Party leader and he doesn’t have a seat in Westminster. He can say whatever he likes, it’s just window dressing, getting ready for the General Election.

      1. Leslie Singleton
        December 12, 2014

        Bob–Even at an absolute minimum, the more common sense one hears the better, for at some stage (perhaps as early as the Greek elections next month) the whole ghastly EU construct will begin to fall apart and every little bit towards that end helps.

        1. Bob
          December 13, 2014


          A picture is worth a thousand words. Imagine a donkey with a stick tied to it’s neck extending out over it’s head with a carrot dangling on a piece of string in front of Neddy’s face, and no matter how many steps Neddy moves forward he can never get the carrot.

          The subject story will no doubt give comfort to some Tory voters who don’t want to face up to the fact that their party is determined to take us to the point of no return regarding the EU. This democracy business is too much like hard work for them, they prefer a soviet style nomenklatura.

  20. margaret brandreth-j
    December 12, 2014

    Certainly is good. It is also good to know that we have a trade surplus with the rest of the world.

    1. acorn
      December 12, 2014

      2013 UK Trade in Goods by area. (ONS: UK Trade, October 2014)

      Eurozone: UK exports £137 billion minus imports 192 b = deficit £55 b.

      EU 28 (inc’ Eurozone): UK exports £154 billion minus imports 224 b = deficit £69 b.

      Rest of World: UK exports £152 billion minus imports 196 b = deficit £43 b.

      The good bit is UK Trade in Services.

      World Wide: UK exports £209 billion minus imports 130 b = profit £79 b

  21. English Pensioner
    December 12, 2014

    It’s hard to disagree with any of the above.
    But it will never happen whilst Cameron is leading the Tories.
    Get the right leader, whom we can trust to mean what he says, and UKIP will start to fade away.

    1. Lifelogic
      December 12, 2014

      Indeed but the right sort of leader will not be elected by the current Tory Party – stuffed as it is with wet Cameron/Ken Clark “wrong on every issue” types.

    2. Tom William
      December 12, 2014

      When Cameron finds his benefits proposals vetoed by the Poles (and others perhaps) he could then say “enough is enough” and go for an article 50 exit. UKIP supporters would have their fox shot and the Conservatives would romp home.

      Don’t hold your breath.

  22. DaveM
    December 12, 2014

    The first two things people will ask are:

    1. Do we have control over our borders again?

    2. Can foreigners in Brussels and Strasbourg still tell us what to do?

    1. Lifelogic
      December 12, 2014

      The answer under LibLabCon will be No and Yes and the EU will charge us hugely for it too.

  23. Bert Young
    December 12, 2014

    Daniel Hannan is highly rated in my book . His common sense , direct experience of the Brussels bureaucracy and his finger on the pulse of public thinking , ought to place him as a contender for leadership of the Conservatives . As it stands Boris will always suffer from features of his past . Theresa May is strong and an equally good starter ; her recent positioning shows she is keen to have a go .
    The report highlighting the advantages of Brexit seems to be a direct follow up to the well researched prize winning document of Iain Mansfield . He showed that our GDP would increase by £1-3bn if we exited and pursued the approach of a Free Trade Association with the EU . I am pleased that a sensible momentum is being created and that there is some hope of us regaining independence .

    1. stred
      December 13, 2014

      Why do we have to choose between a (word left out ed) comedian and a woman who just gave away Magna Carta by a devious procedure in the HoC? There must be some MPs who are competent and straightforward with good debating skills. James Brokenshire was a first class MP for Hornchurch and seems to have a brain to match any. What about the young ex RAF bloke for somewhere in Bucks? Even some of the older MPs seem to perform well and have avoided dementia so far. Unfortunately, there are far too many ex PR dunces, who will vote for someone like themselves when Camrat goes into the speech business.

  24. Peter A
    December 12, 2014

    Excellent work by Mr Hannan again. Not that it will shift the PM or the BBC!

    An excellent request of Santa would be his book Inventing Freedom: How the English-Speaking Peoples Made the Modern World. I just finished it and have to say it makes an incredibly deep, moving and eloquent case for separation with Europe. It describes how incredibly different we are from our Continental Cousins in institutions, thought, word and deed. A difference which has existed and developed over centuries.

    There are good reasons why such a small nation as ours has made such a big impact on the world. One look at the sclerosis presently overtaking Europe reminds us that perhaps we are exceptional, should believe in ourselves a little more and celebrate our differences.
    NB: You’ll never hear anything resembling this on the BBC.

    1. Max Dunbar
      December 12, 2014

      Correct about the BBC. We know it’s rotten, they know it’s rotten.
      The veil of lies called ‘impartiality’ has long since been removed thanks to improved communications and a more sophisticated and critical public. Most of our institutions are dominated by the Left unfortunately. It’s happened so gradually and with such stealth that our minds have become conditioned, brainwashed even, so that comparisons are made within the confines created by these structures.

  25. lojolondon
    December 12, 2014

    Point number 8 should be Point number 1. The crime of recognising another power over Westminster Parliament is High Treason and punishable by death sentence – as King Charles I found.

  26. A different Simon
    December 12, 2014

    ““… Britain is 63 million people”

    Anybody any idea what the true figure is ?

    1. libertarian
      December 12, 2014

      A different Simon

      The actual population of the UK is between 75- 80 million

      Interesting article about how figures are arrived at http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/comment/city-eye-facts-on-a-plate-our-population-is-at-least-77-million-395428.html

    2. Max Dunbar
      December 12, 2014

      Rotate 6 half a turn either direction.

  27. Eddie Hill
    December 12, 2014

    This will cheer you all up:


    As Marx foresaw with capitalism, there are sufficient internal contradictions in the European construct for the whole thing to collapse of its own volition.

    If nothing else, we can all have a good laugh when Ms Merkel gets the bill after the meal and everyone else has already left the restaurant.

    1. Denis Cooper
      December 12, 2014

      Except that we’ve heard all that before; the reality is that when the eurozone was actually close to breaking up in early 2010 the UK government readily went along with the efforts to prevent that happening, and neither the Labour government nor the coalition government asked for anything in exchange for their support for the EU’s campaign to Save the Euro. But perhaps Peter Oborne thinks that most of us have short memories, and maybe he is right about that.

  28. Peter Stroud
    December 12, 2014

    Surely no one but an unpatriotic idiot could object to Mr Hannan’s vision of our future relationship with the EU.

  29. M Browne
    December 12, 2014

    EU membership is just an excuse for poor performance by our business leaders. Many EU countries manage to export far more to China than does Britain, so why can’t we improve our performance. Business leaders here are very well paid, some would say grossly overpaid. They should shape up or make way for others. We also need more companies that actually make things, that the world might buy from us.

    Most immigration into Britain is from outside the EU, so why is this not being stopped. More excuses, lies and incompetence from the authorities here.

  30. Denis Cooper
    December 12, 2014

    I’m not that much interested in comparisons with either Switzerland or Norway, because the UK is neither Switzerland nor Norway; instead it is a net importer from the rest of the EU and a much bigger market, and so it would be in a position to get a much better and tailor-made deal for its relations with the EU after leaving. Those who assume that the politicians leading other EU member states would be sufficiently vindictive to cut off their noses to spite their faces really need to explain why they think we should stay in the EU and submit to government by such people.

    1. Article50
      December 12, 2014

      Denis you’re 2 steps better than GumpGoat’s if we leave the EU we abide by law but have no influence but still 1 step behind where you could be.

      The first mistake from ppl is to conlfate the shorthand of Norway or Switzerland without actually identifying what category they are merely representative of:-

      Norway = Efta/EEA membership
      Switzerland = Efta/Bi-Laterals + EU mix of membership and non-membership.

      UK = Non-EZ EU member with sole opt-out legally from EURO.

      So the short-hand should not be confused with the actual status.

      UK already has paltry influence in the EU Parliament 8% or as 1/28th say in various matters has low influence and 100% acquis.

      Norway has 0% say in the EU Parliament (so only slightly less than the UK) but it has more influence on the formation of the acquis in higher regulatory bodies as per Owen Paterson. It also has about 80% of the acquis or let’s say minus CAP, CFP etc. Overall EEA is a better position with more influence and more status on dictating on adopting acquis because it’s in the EEA.

      Secondly if the UK 64m did leave the EU it still has to abide by current treaties eg Article 50 2 years negotiation with the EU. But once out in the Efta/EEA the weight of the UK to reshape the single market indirectly and more potently as a group with the above is the way to slowly change the nature of European convergence from political to economic. Remember this repeats history with Monnet’s attempts to kill of the rival to the incipient EU political ever closer union (1957 Treaty of Rome). We merely correct that skull-duggery.

      And this is what people fail to appreciate with Brexit: It’s as much correcting past mistakes up to speed with the current speed of change as it is a “new way”.

      Unfortunately many people don’t accept this, who should know better such as Mr. Hannan and it’s no wonder so many people seem confused.

  31. Denis Cooper
    December 12, 2014

    Actually I’m not at all sure about that last point:

    “New European immigrants should not receive unemployment benefit until they have been in the UK for a minimum of one year.”

    Suppose that a foreigner, EU or non-EU, has been allowed to come and live and work in this country on the sound basis that he has knowledge or skills which we actually need and which are presently in short supply in the existing population, and we know nothing bad about him, and so we would definitely benefit from allowing him in at least for some years; but suppose that he takes a job with a firm which soon runs into trouble and so he loses that job, through no fault of his own; do we then say that he is on his own and will get not any help from the host population which previously welcomed him?

    That would seem a bit unreasonable to me.

  32. Gumpy Goat
    December 12, 2014

    Ah I will stay to vote in, Rather be in Europe than out. We would have to follow EU law just as a trading partner with no influence. Let Mr Redwood go to the oracle centre in Reading, the place would close down if was not for our friends from Europe immigrating here. Any way I suspect the EU would have a word or to to say about trade deals so compromises would have to be made. Also I suspect to survive in a open world we would have to be more welcoming, more immigration? That would please lots of british firms as they cannot get the staff. Mr Dyson I note a erosceptic wants more open movement of labour so he can grow his company. I do note in the Scotland referendum, once business stated the benefits of staying together it focussed minds, the same will happen here in a EU referendumm we will stay in.

  33. Tad Davison
    December 12, 2014

    Good, but it just underlines what may of us have been saying for ages.

    My dearest Christmas wish (after winning the lottery) is that substantially more people will finally wake up to the con that has been perpetrated in their name, and to the depth of the it. They need to learn to put their cross in the right place on the ballot paper, and not keep voting for people who treat them with such contempt.

    The alternative to the UK’s EU membership is clearly both viable and workable.

    I see Mr Cameron was recently championing the cause of Turkey’s membership to the EU. I wonder about the ramifications of their accession and the consequences for the UK if that were to happen before we were able to leave?

    Tad Davison


    1. Denis Cooper
      December 12, 2014

      Whatever may be the ramifications of the accession of Turkey to the EU, Hague has done his best to make sure that you and I would not be given a direct say on it in a referendum, any more than we were given a direct say on the accession of Croatia to the EU thanks to the fine print in his so-called “referendum lock” law providing a blanket exemption for all accession treaties.

    2. bluedog
      December 12, 2014

      It defies belief that Cameron can stand beside the Turkish PM and speak in favour of the EU. Does Cameron think that the Turks do not follow the British debate on the EU and the popular dismay at unfettered immigration from far eastern Europe? Well-informed Turks must be astounded by Cameron’s intervention.

      But that is not the point. Cameron’s extraordinary comments may be the tipping point in the electoral fortunes of the Conservative Party. Farage could scarcely wish for a better Christmas present than a speech from Cameron in support of Turkish EU membership. If Cameron and his advisers were to sit down and think of the stupidest possible policy statement in the context on the May 2015 GE, anything on Turkish EU membership would qualify.

      One has to conclude that Cameron simply doesn’t understand British politics.

  34. Dr Richard North
    December 12, 2014

    In presenting this as a “reform” agenda, Mr Hannan presumably has in mind that Mr Cameron would be taking the Art.48 route, in which case he must know that the UK must attain a majority just to get it on the European Council agenda.

    Should he overcome this hurdle, which may prove impossible, he must then know that the nature of the changes proposed would require a convention as well as an IGC, against a probable timescale of 3-4 years, ruling out a 2017 referendum.

    This notwithstanding, the chances of an Art.48 “reform” succeeding, on these grounds, is probably nil, in which case we would be looking at an Art.50 notification.

    In this, Mr Hannan asserts that we could “do better than Switzerland”, but gives us no clue as to how long ab initio bilateral negotiations would take, given that it took Switzerland took 16 years to reach its present state, which includes freedom of movement provisions more stringent than in the EEA agreement.

    Does Mr Hannan think we could reach an agreement within the two years set for the initial Art.50 negotiations, and if he could not, how much time does he think should be allowed for such negotiations?

    1. Denis Cooper
      December 12, 2014

      You can start by saying that you want treaty changes under Article 48 TEU on revision of the treaties, while making it clear that if your demands are not taken seriously then you will be prepared to invoke Article 50 TEU on withdrawal of a member state from the EU, both of which articles are here:

      for those who are not familiar with them.

      But if you are going to do that you need to have firmly resolved that if necessary you will leave, and it would be worse than useless to embark on that having given the governments of other member states the strong impression that even if they give you the brush off you will still stay in the EU.

    2. Lifelogic
      December 12, 2014

      Indeed the Cameron plan is all clearly a long grass con trick by the serial ratter, EUphile, green crap, tax increasing socialist Cameron. We all know this.

      1. APL
        December 15, 2014

        Lifelogic: “We all know this.”

        Including Mr Redwood.

    December 12, 2014

    Judging by geo-political events of late, if one hadn’t noticed them sooner, the EU is all about militarism, with economics coming a poor second.

    A/ The siding with Ukraine in its dispute with Russia does not bring the slightest bit of economic good news for the EU, quite the reverse.

    B/ Putting pressure to the point of sanctions on southern European nations such as Bulgaria and others to stop them going along with Russia’s southern pipeline is detrimental on a huge ongoing scale economically to those states and so too to the EU.

    C/ The threats and pressure put on Hungary by the EU in its long-standing economic relationship with Russia is a dagger in the side of that country and also bad news for the economic interests of the EU itself.

    D/ The flirtation by the Baltic States with US Defense bases may make them feel more at ease but is ruining their mainly agricultural economy and creating unsustainable internal economic and ethnic problems.

    One could go on through all the alphabet. The US is indeed a close ally. But I do not see them making any special relationship discounts in price to LNG for our terminal in Wales nor the joint LNG terminal proposed by Finland/ Estonia(? ) nor the LNG terminal planned by Poland. LNG I might add is considerably more expensive than fuel delivered by pipeline from Russia or, most interestingly, Norway.
    So what’s the game?

  36. Dr Richard North
    December 12, 2014

    Dear Mr Redwood

    I notice you have deleted my comment about this post. Can you advise me quite what it was which was so offensive that caused you to do so, so that I can avoid such grave errors in the future?

    1. ian wragg
      December 12, 2014

      Perhaps it was your visceral hatred of Nigel and all things UKIP.

  37. Elliot Kane
    December 12, 2014

    Looks good to me! Daniel has long been one of Britain’s clearest and most sensible thinkers when it comes to the EU.

    It’s only point nine I might quibble: EU citizens should have the same rights to claim benefits in Britain as all other non-Britons. No more and no less. If that is what Daniel is suggesting, great.

  38. waramess
    December 12, 2014

    Nothing in life is certain but ,what one can be pretty sure of is:-
    The Conservatives will not win a majority in the General Election,
    There will be no renegotiation with the EU,
    There will be no referendum,
    The EU will take the opportunity to enact further treaties to make a later Brexit more difficult.

    The Parliamentary EUsceptics efforts will have been in vain and the EU philes will have secured a victory.

    Now is the perfect opportunity for true eurosceptic MP’s to make a difference by moving to UKIP. If sufficient do so it could be a rare opportunity to change the balance favour of those who wish to retain British sovereignty.

  39. A.Sedgwick
    December 12, 2014

    This is an excellent expose of the damage we are suffering but the continuing concern is why any anti EU politician is aligning him/herself with D.Cameron. It is akin to betting the store on 40-1 shot in the Grand National. My assessement is that 2/3 of the Parliamentary CP are pro EU or at best fencesitters waiting to be blown off depending on the wind direction. The proposition that only the Conservatives can realistically form the next Government and so obtain meaningful negotiation leading to a 2017 referendum is a very spurious argument.

    1. Negotiating a new UK Treaty with the 27 is hopelessly impracticable given the many vested interests.
    2. 2015 is likely to see another hung Parliament with no guarantee that even if the CP is the biggest party they can command a negotiation/referendum in the Commons.
    3. We may be in for two or more elections in the next few years.
    3. SNP are looking more like the other spoilers in the election.
    4. The only way you can be sure your anti EU vote reflects your viewpoint is to vote for a dedicated anti EU party.
    5. The wasted vote argument would mean that democracies would never evolve. The effect of UKIP on English politics so far is an example of such evolution.

  40. Lindsay McDougall
    December 12, 2014

    In other words, OUT.

  41. Mike Wilson
    December 12, 2014

    Is this ‘Dan Hannan’ in the Conservative Party?


  42. bluedog
    December 12, 2014

    Daniel Hannan is talking complete sense, as usual. Let’s do it.

    For those who didn’t read Hannan’s brilliant piece in the DT about the socialist origins of the Nazi party, one can only say that you should!

    Like Dr JR, Hannan is a rare politician who thinks for himself on substantive matters and is not swayed by temporary fads or an obsession with form.

    Would that we had a PM with the same qualities.

  43. Max Dunbar
    December 12, 2014

    Just about all that Mr Hannan says is blindingly obvious, but at the moment these wonderful ideas are hypothetical. It just isn’t going to happen unless Cameron is removed, and the general public are more interested in other things at present in any case.
    Why choose this moment? Hardly a revelation is it?

  44. Dr Richard North
    December 13, 2014

    The Hannan option really isn’t an option at all – it’s an inchoate wish list, with no binding or underlying plan or philosophy. We need to do better …

    Reply please explain why you think this

    1. Dr Richard North
      December 13, 2014

      The explanation is in the link which you deleted …

      That’s why I posted the link, and why it is repeated above.

      Reply Summarise the points here if you wish to be part of our debate, so we can all see the force of your arguments. I do not have time to0 check your link.

  45. brian
    December 13, 2014

    If we were not in the EU free movement of labour would be a condition of any trading agreement with the EU. Ask the Norwegians and the Swiss (although the Swiss have made some changes which were countered by some small penalties).

    1. sm
      December 13, 2014

      Just trade – without agreements.

  46. Frederick
    December 13, 2014

    Hi Mr Redwood

    Any chance of you addressing the comment by Richard North. If he is correct then all of your praise for Daniel Hannan is quite misplaced and shows that Hannan, despite being an MEP, understands little about the processes of the EU.

    Reply Which comment?

    1. Frederick
      December 13, 2014

      The one by Richard North regarding the impossibility of an Article 48 reform before 2017 and even that assumes that such a motion gets tabled by the EC which seems unlikely.

    2. Hope
      December 13, 2014

      I think Dr North has explained why Hannan’s comment is no more than a wish list. It cannot be implemented as he explains. He is not alone there are other commentators who think Cameron is unable to deliver because of the support he would require from other countries and the time frame he suggests.

  47. Richard North
    December 14, 2014

    Mr Redwood – you ask me to explain and then delete my response. Don’t you think that behaviour is a bit odd?
    Reply I have to moderate quickly so I make instant judgements based on the criteria I have set out. Just avoid possible libels and exotic links to sites I do not read

Comments are closed.