After many years of negotiation, the EU announced this week that it has finalised a trade deal with Japan, the world’s third largest economy.
The deal will remove ‘almost entirely’ any tariffs on trade between that country and the EU bloc.
Unsurprisingly, supporters of remaining in the EU have been gleefully pointing out that such a deal proves that the UK needs to stay in to gain advantages that we will lose upon Brexit.
But let’s look at just what the deal means.
Whilst gaining tariff free access to the Single Market, Japan will retain full border control, make no payments to the EU, will not be subject to rulings from the ECJ or Directives from The Commission and will be able to make its own trade deals in the future. Isn’t this what the EU have been saying is impossible in the ongoing Brexit ‘negotiations’ due to the ‘integrity’ of the Single Market?
If they can give such a deal to Japan, why not to the UK – a country with whom they have far larger trade at the present time? Indeed, Article 8 of The Lisbon Treaty states –
The Union shall develop a special relationship with neighbouring countries, aiming to establish an area of prosperity and good neighbourliness, founded on the values of the Union and characterised by close and peaceful relations based on cooperation.