.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Monday, February 19, 2018

Why is Theresa May penalising European citizens?

The Prime Minister's well-known obsession with immigration figures could come back to haunt her during the Brexit negotiations as she seeks to shore up her unattainable targets by removing rights from citizens of EU countries.

Her demand that EU nationals coming to the UK during a Brexit transition deal should enjoy fewer rights than those already in the country has already upset the European Parliament's Brexit co-ordinator, Guy Verhofstadt who says that it amounts to “penalising citizens”.

The Guardian reports Verhofstadt, as saying: “It’s not acceptable for us that rules will continue without change for financial services, for goods, for whatever other business, and only for the citizens, their situation will change. That is penalising citizens.” He is clear that the UK is trying to have its cake and eat it.

The extent to which the UK Government is getting these negotiations wrong is illustrated by the Belgian MEP's bluntness when asked about UK hopes for a final deal that would mean different arrangements for different sections of the economy:

“That will not be the outcome of these negotiations. It cannot be the outcome,” Verhofstadt told BBC1’s Andrew Marr Show, saying he could not countenance a trade deal that would also see the UK seek advantage through lower taxes and regulations.

Ministers continue to mishandle these negotiations, apparently failing to understand the nature of the institution they are dealing with and the vested interests that European countries are seeking to protect. Their targeting of European citizens in this country threatens to split families and damage the economy.

What is worse they do not seem to understand how this approach undermines their own position on future trade. We cannot have tariff-free trade without freedom of movement for labour. Trying to split the two will see us emerge from this process empty-handed and isolated. Is that what those who voted for Brexit really want?
Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?