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The damage inflicted on this island by the UK in relation to Brexit May 18, 2017

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.

I’ve noted this before but the report from the IMF really brings it into clear focus, whatever our views of that less than august institution.

The sheer damage that Brexit will inflict on this island and this state is huge. And it is a factor that was waved away by the proponents of Brexit prior to (and to a degree after) the referendum.

In its latest country report on Ireland, the IMF said economic growth is robust and the medium-term outlook remains positive but the country faces a number of challenges – with Brexit chief among them.

The organisation cites the United Kingdom’s vote to leave the European Union as the “most pressing and far-reaching challenge for Ireland”.

It said while so far the impact of Brexit here has been modest, effects over the medium term “are expected to be negative and significant”, while there could be “sizeable consequences for activity and employment” in rural parts of the country.

That point about medium term is – I feel – spot on. Far too much has been made of how muted the impact of the referendum so far – well, bar currency devaluation etc (and an interesting report last week on how the EU was pushing for public contracts for projects in the r27 to exclude British firms – understandable I would have said). But yes, the reality of Brexit has yet to hit home. Meanwhile there’s a shadow war.

Yet politically and in other respects the fact that Britain has adopted a position that is uniquely hostile to our interests is far too little stated. Indeed if one sought to design a means of disrupting this island economically (let alone in regard to the various political processes on it) one would have to go quite some way to find a better means.

And the reality is that there’s little or nothing we can do about it.


1. EWI - May 18, 2017

Are they still pressing their renewed claim to all of Lough Foyle?


simonjkyte - May 18, 2017



2. Joe - May 18, 2017

Perfidious Albion wha’?
It’s potential damage though isn’t it? And the thing is the more damage the UK does to us and to the rest of the EU in this process, the more damage it will be doing to itself. So I think that as the process of Brexit plays out, there will be a lot less actual damage all round than is being predicted in the more pessimistic scenarios.

“Yet politically and in other respects the fact that Britain has adopted a position that is uniquely hostile to our interests is far too little stated.”
But surely there’s good political reasons for the RoI to go easy on this point. Yep, the UK’s Brexit decision could have serious implications for trade and jobs here. But we’ve a lot we both (UK and RoI) want to hold onto – things like the common travel area and, you know, the handy fact that you or I or any other citizen of the RoI can up sticks to the UK at any time and be immediately treated over there exactly the same as any UK citizen (the right to vote, to claim the dole and so on and on). This has been extremely handy for millions of Irish people since the establishment of the state – and quite the handy thing for the state itself too since it found itself totally unable to provide a living for a good proportion of its population for most of the years of its existence.
So the RoI state still has good political reasons for going easy on the UK in this process. It makes absolute sense for the RoI to stay as friendly as possible with the UK in order to maintain as many of the mutual benefits of that friendship as possible. I’m not going as far as Tom McGurk and his mothership but we have been and always will be closer (geographically and culturally and politically) to the UK than to the rest of the EU.
The French are on the sea and all that but they (or the Spanish for that matter) never seemed to do much for us on the few times they actually landed.

We need to control our kneejerk perfidious Albion narrative in all this. They ain’t all bad. PS: Rock on Rockall, you’ll never fall. I’ll be with EWI in the currach as we drive the UK navy into the middle of Lough Foyle.


WorldbyStorm - May 18, 2017

Joe I’m half English, was born in London and lived there on and off over the years, I haven’t an ounce of anti- Englishness, kneejerk or otherwise, it’d be utterly stupid of me, but I will strongly critique decisions made by English politicians etc. And given how lop sided the discourse in the UK on Brexit and how indifferent it is to others I think it necessary for us to point out a few home truths.

Re actual damage well in the agri sector that’s already started.


Joe - May 18, 2017

WBS, I’m a Gael through and through – not a drop of English blood in me and the innate anti-English kneejerk in me is happy about that. And the brother is a provo-supporting, British Labour party – supporting, UK resident all his working life. London is his home and he’s happy there. All this is an indication of the complexity of the interconnectedness of these islands.

Fundamentally what I’m saying about the piece is this: Maybe the RoI is right not to complain too much about the effect of the UK’s actions up to now – if we get snotty with them, they might get the hump and inflict more damage.

You know, brothers being brothers, I like mine but prefer him happy over in London than him (and maybe me) miserable over here.


WorldbyStorm - May 18, 2017

I think you’re taking away a misinterpretation of what I said. At no point have I said about getting snotty. Indeed in the OP I never mentioned that whatsoever. It is you who has interpreted this as an attack on the English.

My concern there is that there’s a real element of ‘don’t mention the war’. Which is fine as far as it goes. But if UK actions aren’t borne of malice – but indifference and ignorance, then for our own sake I think it’s no harm at all to point that out calmly but forcefully. As to what we say on this blog I don’t think we should be too worried about it’s negligible impact on Anglo-Irish relations 🙂 .


3. An Sionnach Fionn - May 18, 2017

My mother and sister raised an interesting point the other day in relation to buying British food. Specifically meat-based products. With the UK out of the EU are the British going to draw a line through decades of EU food standards and hygiene rules, à la Trump in the US? Or will they continue to harmonise in order to have access to EU markets, as non-EU states have to do?

We could find ourselves in a situation down the line where the EU acts in a punitive manner towards suspect UK food production rules. An outbreak of foot-and-mouth or similar contagious herd disease in the UK would receive a less than sympathetic response from Brussels.

And what of local consumers here and elsewhere in the EU? If members of my family are already casting a cold eye at British products how far will that extend? How will a UK retail giant Tesco react to demands by Irish buyers for EU-regulated foods?

Yes, the British will drag us half-way down in their Brexit madness but they are the ones who are in for the bumpiest ride.

We just need to have politicians cute hoor enough to exploit Britain’s self-harm fetish.


WorldbyStorm - May 18, 2017

It’s crucial isn’t it to distinguish between the government of the UK and those within it. But yes, that dynamic I think will come more into play particularly if job losses ramp up. So far direct losses seem to me to be in the 000’s – restricted so far to the agri-business and mushroom farming in particular.


shea - May 19, 2017

wbs on job losses so far, just to be devils advocate, are they not down to fluctuations in sterling, which would be a potential problem since we joined the euro and they didn’t.

On trade wars between the europeans and the brits, its a potential, i’d hope we aren’t moving so much good through britain to europe and the rest of the world or receiving goods through britain from europe and the rest of the world if it ever comes about, this state would be the weak leg in a spat like that.

Can presume the best but like sterling fluctuating, give it time and every the presumed unlikely can happen.


benmadigan - May 18, 2017

“buying British food?”.

some patriot or other once said “burn everything british but the coal”

The irish could start a quiet “buy everything but british” campaign!!!


4. CL - May 18, 2017

“The president of a French farming union has called for the re-introduction of a hard border between Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland after Brexit.
Christophe Hillairet expressed concern that food produced outside the European Union could easily cross a “soft” Irish border and enter EU markets.”

Liked by 1 person

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