Its happened. Eleven o’clock on the night of Friday 31st January 2020 has arrived and Brexit has ‘been done’.
The UK has woken from the European dream, but sadly Big Ben failed to bong and any celebrations that did take place could only be described as low key at the best.
Brexit and the 11.00pm deadline has caused divisions within the UK, indeed some see the image of Big Ben at 11.00pm as a clock heading towards the start of a new day while others view it as a doomsday clock on its way to midnight.
Now, let me make it clear what follows in the rest of this blog is entirely my own opinion and my own predictions. Indeed my predictions may turn out to be wrong and you may disagree with my views and opinions but that’s fair enough.
So what can we expect now the UK has left the EU, albeit with a ‘transition period’ that will last until then end of 2020?
Well firstly my good self expects a trade deal with the USA to be agreed within days or weeks at the most, possibly before talks even start on a trade deal with the EU.
Who knows, as part of a trade deal maybe there will even be ‘freedom of movement’ and a ‘single market’ created between the UK and the US?
And what might happen when the UK leaves the transition period in a few months time?
Do you remember the ‘metric martyrs’ who wanted to use imperial units of measurement? Yours truly can see the UK returning to ounces, pounds, feet and inches as our preferred units of measurement now we have left ‘metric Europe’. Incidentally the US still uses imperial measurements as their ‘customary units‘.
Yours truly fears that changes to employment law may come about giving employers the upper hand to drive the economy forward. Go back in time before we joined the EU there was no real concept of ‘unfair dismissal’ or a tribunal system to hold employers to account.
How many employers would become more competitive if they were able to fire employees at will and with very short notice with no legal comeback like in the early part of the 20th Century? An easy way for an employer to increase profits is by simply getting rid of their current employees and hiring new staff at a lower rate of pay.
Your humble servant can see house prices falling too. Indeed before the boom of the late 1980’s houses were seen as places to live and not moneymaking investments.
One of the changes that my good self would like to see would be a reduction, or even total abolition of Value Added Tax. If VAT was cut to 10% would it not boost the economy? If VAT was abolished completely just think how cheaper things would become.
I wonder if there will be any carefully crafted television programmes to coax us into the post Brexit way of life? If the country prospers then maybe the ‘Loadsamoney’ comedy character will return to our screens, but if the opposite happens then perhaps the character of ‘Yosser Hughes’ will return or maybe there will be an up-to-date remake of the 1970’s series ‘The Good Life’ where a man digs up his front garden to grow food to feed himself.
But will Brexit be a success? If industry, especially in Northern Ireland, is bogged down with customs declarations importing goods from the UK or if business on the mainland exporting to the EU end up being suffocated in red tape, then my good self fears there will be a call for us to rejoin the EU.
But what will the Brexiteers do now their ambitions have been achieved? Will they suddenly become quiet or move on to another ‘project’?
Will the UK see an upsurgence in calls to rejoin the EU? That may well happen if the economic climate deteriorates following Brexit. In such a scenario my good self can see the UK rejoining the EU within five years or so.
If things go wrong for the UK now we are independent again then it will be us that have ‘been done’ and not Brexit.
What do you think?
My blogs are published regularly here on the WycombeToday.com website.