On 29 March, the British government activated Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty to formally launch the negotiations which will determine the conditions of the United Kingdom to leave the European Union. FTA is pushing for a sound strategy to mitigate negative impacts, promote possible opportunities and effectively represent the interest of its members.
“The upcoming talks should be conducted in a spirit of fairness, trust and partnership to make sure the negotiations advance quickly, create legal clarity soon and prevent major business disruption”, says Christian Ewert, FTA Director General.
Brexit has plunged the EU into a time of significant uncertainty given that it is the first time that a member state has opted to leave the Union, and therefore, many questions remain to be answered. Despite this high level of uncertainty, Brexit clearly has the potential of having a considerable – negative – effect on the business sector:
- Tariffs and border checks are very likely to be imposed in the future bilateral trade relations;
- Brexit might negatively impact economic growth – and consequently consumption – in the UK, the EU and the world;
- The EU will lose a liberal voice and we might see a shift towards a more ‘defensive’ EU trade policy;
- Brexit is a severe setback for the European integration process and pressure is high to reduce the influence of the EU, potentially leading to more market fragmentation.
FTA will remain an active advocate for a smart Brexit process that safeguards open markets and business interests, against the current protectionist trends gaining ground in Europe and abroad.