Over the next few days I will publish pieces setting out how we can use our new found freedoms and spend our own money after 31 October when we are scheduled to leave the EU.
One of the important wins will be to resume our full voting membership of the World Trade Organisation. Once out we will decide our own tariffs for imports into the UK. We can exercise this freedom to take all tariffs off products we do not make or grow for ourselves, providing cheaper food and clothes for UK consumers.
The EU imposes average tariffs of 5%, with an average 11.8% tariff on food. Dairy products are charged at a high 38.1%, fruit and vegetables at 11.5% and sugar and confectionery at 23%. Why shouldn’t we enjoy cheaper oranges and lemons from countries like South Africa, and cheaper wines from Australia and New Zealand?
The UK government has already set out a provisional tariff schedule, and has decided to abolish all tariffs on imported components, providing a welcome boost to UK manufacturing.
The EU will decide whether the UK must pay the external tariffs it charges the USA, China and others on their exports to the EU, or whether to negotiate a free trade agreement to avoid tariffs both ways.
Either way there are plenty of UK trade opportunities. EU tariffs in certain areas are too high. They are an unwelcome tax on the consumer, designed to protect continental farmers and producers at the expense of growers and makers elsewhere in the world. We should bring those down as we leave.