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(11) Plan B: deal, no deal, extend, revoke, vote again...???
#1
(11) Brexit plan B: deal, no deal, extend, revoke, renegotiate, no deal off the table, remove backstop, leave, remain, another referendum, EU elections???

On 21 January 2019, PM May presented her Brexit plan B which is just like Brexit plan A - where on 15 January the British MPs stupidly voted against the EU27-UK Withdrawal Agreement and Political Declaration with a 230 majority.

Now WHAT? What options does the UK have and how complex are they? What needs to happen for the UK to actually implement an option? What are implications of the options for the UK and the EU27? Has the UK already run out of time? Will the UK participate in the EU elections?

Discuss.

Note: Tomorrow, on 23 January 2019, it will be SIX YEARS since Cameron announced the Brexit referendum in his Bloomberg speech.
#2
Hello everybody.

To get straight to it, there is one point I have missed in almost all Brexit discussions:
What happens after a no deal Brexit (and I do not mean the likely chaos)?

Most comments and discussions seem to imply that Brexit is over in case of a no deal. That's it. Ajda closes this websites, news media focuses on Trump only, ...etc. All done.  Finished, we move on.

Sure there are a lot of comments about the chaos that is likely to ensue, but this is not what I mean. How will UK and EU continue on the negotiation front? Certainly they want to overcome the chaos and normalize the relationship.

My assumption is that the EU will take the WA, removes the transition period, reduces the amount to be paid by the UK (the part that corresponded to the transition period) and then says this needs to be agreed on before we negotiate any future trade deal. Interestingly, this could mean that the WA rejection by the UK MPs only means a rejection of the transition period!

In my opinion the UK is then in an even worse negotiation position as they then have to negotiate from outside the EU. Hence any delay or infighting have no impact on the EU from a political point of view. And the likely chaos might put the UK under pressure too (but there will also be some hardship on the EU side creating pressure for the EU).

Or will there be a long string of smaller agreements? What do others think?
#3
(22-01-19, 02:03 AM)A user Wrote: Or will there be a long string of smaller agreements? What do others think?


First off, the EU will basically allow everything to continue as-if to get over the first few days. The great thing about force-majeure is that there are all sorts of legal provisions for coping with it. The principal objective will be to avoid all the predicted mayhem. Unpredicted mayhem is an issue but we can do our best on the day.

As things settle, then the reality of brexit will be re-introduced progressively - including a hard Irish border. 

By the time mini-deals get on the agenda, it will be the UK looking for concessions. The EU will still be looking for the broad terms of the withdrawal agreement to be met.
#4
(20-09-18, 01:25 PM)Ajda Slovenia Wrote: Brexit plan B: deal, no deal, extend, revoke, renegotiate, no deal off the table, remove backstop, leave, remain, another referendum, EU elections???

Honestly, I don't know anymore, Ajda. 

People often say that you cannot predict anything in this clusterfuck. But May's red lines combined with the logical steps of this process, we could more or less conceive from the start some steps in this process. I mean, since this is a legal process, you can predict some outcomes on a general level. Somehow or other, there would be a WA, and it would have to be ratified by all parties concerned. 

But I could never have imagined where we are now, and I can't see anything happening now that would be a logical continuation of the process that had been started. I could never have imagined that there was this much road for the can to be kicked. And every time I thought that the road had ended, May just gave it another kick. You'd think I'd have learned my lesson by now...

I think all that we can do from now on is look on in awe and astonishment, mixed with some degree of fear.
#5
A fascinating article by former Tory trade minister Lord Peter Lilley appeared in the Guardian today 

Taking no deal off the table would leave us at the EU’s mercy (22 Jan 2019)
Peter Lilley
No business would enter into negotiations without being prepared to walk away – losing a no-deal Brexit option would weaken our position
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfre...-brexit-eu

The crux of his argument is that attempts to rule out a no deal are sending May naked to the negotiating table. I had to double-check when the article was written but it was today. Lilley talks as if negotiations are about to start and completely ignores the fact that the EU have said, many times, negotiations are finished. I despair.
#6
The thing that May is kicking together with the parliament is a can of worms, rather ugly ones - hence all the kicking.

Sorry for offending the worms.
#7
(22-01-19, 07:22 PM)Blackbeard's Ghost Wrote: Taking no deal off the table would leave us at the EU’s mercy (22 Jan 2019)

The level of delusional incompetence is breathtaking.

For the record, here is a copy my comment which I posted at Indy several times (starting in July 2017 = a year and a half ago quoting Barnier's explanation on 6 July 2017 = three weeks after start of Brexit negotiations) in response to various claims about the UK's great negotiating position and threats with walking away from the negotiating table:


*****************

A ‘good’ Brexit never existed.

(1) The UK NEVER had a strong negotiating position. Brexit means totally weakening and isolating the UK in a globalised world in which all countries which are not trading elephants are in some regional trade bloc, with a trend of increasing integration within the blocs.

(2) There is nothing grand to 'negotiate' about under Article 50 anyway (no matter how the British politicians and media lie about it). The 'negotiations' are actually just a legal procedure to technically disentangle the UK from the EU in some orderly way. Nothing more.

Article 50 clearly states that there is only ONE kind of Brexit: on 30 March 2019, the UK will be automatically 100% OUT of the EU (as an automatic legal consequence of triggering Article 50) = out of the EU treaties and consequently AUTOMATICALLY out of ALL things related to EU membership: out of the EU customs union, the EU single market, Euratom, Open Skies, EEA, Europol, ESA, European Investment Bank, EHIC, EU scientific cooperation, Galileo, Erasmus, EU's WTO schedules (including the allowed agricultural subsidies which the EU has negotiated at the WTO and is administering them under the CAP), 750+ agreements with third countries which the UK used to have as an EU member... 

(3) The Brexit UK will never be able to threaten with ‘no deal’ with any credibility.

Barnier explained the problem of 'no deal' for the UK here:

"I want to be very clear: in a classic negotiation, ‘no deal' means a return to the status quo. In the case of Brexit, ‘no deal' would be a return to a distant past.

* ‘No deal' would mean that our trade relations with the United Kingdom would be based on World Trade Organisation rules. There would be customs duties of almost 10 % on vehicle imports, an average of 19 % for beverages and tobacco, and an average of 12% on lamb and also fish, for which the vast majority of British exports go to the EU.

* While leaving the customs union would in any case involve border formalities, ‘no deal' would mean very cumbersome procedures and controls, without facilitation, which would be particularly damaging for companies that operate on a ‘just in time' basis.

For a manufacturer of sports equipment or industrial parts based in the UK, whose products are at present shipped to the single market immediately, this would mean in practical terms:

* keeping their products in stock for 3 or 4 days instead of a few hours,
* renting warehouse space,
* an increase in transport costs, with a greater logistical risk.

In practice, ‘no deal' would worsen the ‘lose-lose' situation which is bound to result from Brexit. And I think, objectively, that the UK would have more to lose than its partners.

I therefore want to be very clear: to my mind there is no reasonable justification for the ‘no deal' scenario. There is no sense in making the consequences of Brexit even worse.

That is why we want an agreement. That is why the 27 Member States and the European Parliament want an agreement. To my British partners I say: a fair deal is far better than no deal."


The above quote is from BARNIER’S STATEMENT TO THE EESC on 6 July 2017 - I recommend you read the WHOLE statement:
http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_SPE...922_en.htm

So in classic negotiations, the 'no deal' option means 'no change' - everything remains as it used to be before the negotiations. But this is NOT true for the Brexit negotiations. In particular for the UK, 'no deal' means a HUGE change - indeed a bigger change than an exit agreement which would at least make Brexit a bit more smooth.

The one who can afford to walk away are the EU27, not the UK. The UK is the one facing the cliff edge, not the EU27.

*****************
#8
It is very scary to see a former minister so uninformed and spreading such nonsense! 
And it also seems that the brits had never the idea that a negotiation between two neighboring countries cannot be compared to business deals! 
At business, if you botch it, you just walk away and likely have never talk to each other again. As a country and its neighbor that does not work. 
Even worse if you are dependent on future agreements, like agriculture, energy....
#9
(22-01-19, 08:17 PM)Mico Wrote: It is very scary to see a former minister so uninformed and spreading such nonsense! 
And it also seems that the brits had never the idea that a negotiation between two neighboring countries cannot be compared to business deals! 
At business, if you botch it, you just walk away and likely have never talk to each other again. As a country and its neighbor that does not work. 
Even worse if you are dependent on future agreements, like agriculture, energy....

All true... but isn't this desperate, grubby form of blackmail (by threatening economic suicide of one of the largest economies in the world) being met with serious concern?  Not just in Europe, but throughout world: Shinzo Abe told May that the whole world is concerned that a No Deal outcome should not happen, financial pundits across the globe are predicting turmoil if it does, etc.

At the very least, it appears that by refusing to adopt some alternative to No Deal in extremis, and if only for the sake of Ireland (more blackmail), it seems that it may make the EU27 govts more likely to agree to an extension (for a specific purpose such as a referendum... or more probably shouting like children across the floor of the HoC for another 3 months).
#10
(22-01-19, 09:04 PM)CaroleG Wrote: At the very least, it appears that by refusing to adopt some alternative to No Deal in extremis, and if only for the sake of Ireland (more blackmail), it seems that it may make the EU27 govts more likely to agree to an extension (for a specific purpose such as a referendum... or more probably shouting like children across the floor of the HoC for another 3 months).

Carol, the EU27 leaders have expressed their concern many hundreds of times during the last six years. They have extended a helping hand to the UK many times too, in spite of all the insults, deliberate damage caused to the rest of us, lies, serial reneging on already agreed things etc. To no avail.

As for preventing the worst of no deal chaos, the EU27 already have in the legislative pipeline unilateral measures to for example keep the planes flying, keep the financial services working etc. The EU27 leaders have also warned the UK that these measures will only be effective if the UK too adopts complementary unilateral measures. But nobody in the UK is listening. NOBODY. At least I have not heard any Brit mention this even once. Have you?

The Brits seem not to understand even the basics of the rule of law, either at the EU or at the wider international level (and of course the UK does not actually have the rule of law internally). They seem to think that in the 21st century one can just fudge things, without any underlying international legislation. This is however not possible.

The real problem in the UK is that there is nobody even remotely capable of governing the UK. Nobody. External intervention = helping hand cannot help the Brits if they are not capable of implementing the needed measures internally. And the Brits themselves seem not to be ready to get their house in order. What should we do? Invade the UK militarily and install a temporary international government until we teach the Brits how to manage a country in the 21st century? Only the Brits can save the Brits from themselves.

Carol, please explain what on earth do you think that the EU27 should do. Re the Irish border, it is simply not possible to fudge things due to international law which is binding to both the UK and the EU27 (the Good Friday Agreement, the WTO rules). Surely you do not expect that the EU27 will open ALL our borders (= lift customs and regulatory controls on all external borders of the EU27 single market) due to UK's total incompetence???


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