Storbritannien kommer förlora på att lämna EU trots friare handel globalt

Frihandelsbloggen har inte skrivit särskilt mycket om Brexit. Anledningen är att det mesta hittills har varit oklart när det gäller frågor som påverkar handeln.

Vad man har kunnat säga är att exempelvis japansk bilindustri som har Storbritannien som väg in i EU kommer att få problem och britternas utträde är förmodligen ett skäl till att ett frihandelsavtal mellan EU och Japan så snabbt kommit till stånd. Att TPP stoppades av Trump är förmodligen ett annat skäl.

Men om några veckor kommer förhandlingarna igång mellan EU och Storbritannien om villkoren för handeln. Den här artikeln i Financial Times ger en bra bild av vilka problem och möjligheter som finns, baserad på hur frihandelsavtal brukar vara utformade. Sammantaget verkar de flesta anta att Storbritannien förlorar på att lämna den inre marknaden, trots att det ger möjlighet att öppna för friare handel med resten av världen:

”With two exceptions, all publicly available forecasts suggest that UK economic output will be lower under an FTA than if Britain continued as a member of the EU. The estimated cumulative loss of gross domestic product ranges from a relatively low 0.6 per cent by 2030 to up to 7.8 per cent.

The evidence shows that removing trade barriers generally results in increased trade flows. That leads most economists to conclude that entering into an FTA with the EU will reduce the UK’s trade with the bloc.

“The reduction in trade with the EU . . . is by far the most quantitatively important channel by which leaving the EU affects the UK economy,” said researchers at the National Institute of Economic and Social Research. It estimated that with an FTA, UK GDP would be 1.9 to 2.3 per cent lower by 2030.

Since trade with the UK is a smaller share of EU national income than vice versa, the economic effects of moving to an FTA are predicted to be smaller for the EU.

The CPB estimates that EU GDP could be about 0.6 per cent lower by 2030 under an FTA than if the UK remained a member of the bloc. This compares with their estimate of a 3.4 per cent loss of GDP for the UK.

Why do some studies predict larger or smaller negative effects?
The NIESR estimated that the UK GDP loss could more than double if lower trade and foreign investment had a knock-on effect on productivity growth.

Some published studies suggest that such negative effects could be partially offset by changes to UK regulations or through new free-trade agreements with non-EU countries.

Open Europe, a think-tank, estimated that GDP could be boosted by about 1.3 percentage point by 2030 if swaths of labour, product standard, consumer protection and environmental regulations were repealed. The UK government denies that it seeks such a bonfire of regulation.

However, the latest British government modelling suggests that new FTAs with non-EU countries could boost GDP by up to 0.7 per cent after 15 years.

Why do some economists think Britain would gain?
Economists for Free Trade, the Brexit-supporting group, estimates that an FTA with the EU could contribute to an increase to British GDP of 2 to 4 per cent over the next 15 years.

But this forecast assumes that the UK government removes all tariffs and non-tariff restrictions on imports, whatever their origin, suggesting that the UK would accept any goods of any standard, as well as zero border costs with the EU.

Alasdair Smith, a fellow of the UKTPO says the modelling is “unrealistic”.

He said: “The simple arithmetic is that the reduction in costs on non-EU imports does not compensate for losing the easy access to EU imports that results from the customs union and single market.””


Kategorier: Brexit