Save the Union, Boris’ reasons: integrity of the Kingdom and free trade

The developments in the negotiations between the United Kingdom and the European Union to regulate relations between the parties after Brexit have generated the same confusion as a stone thrown in a pigeon house. Not only in the European ranks, but also within the same Conservative Party led by Boris Johnson who, took pen and paper, put his intentions on paper with an article published last Saturday by the Daily Telegraph and from whose columns the first British minister has always assured in the role of a journalist opinions intended to heat the debate, whatever the subject matter.

A populist who signs agreements already thinking about how to take them back: it is the most obvious conclusion among the pro-Europeans who still struggle to digest the idea that someone could leave the group. A reckless leader who, in order to secure a solid majority, signed a Whitdrawal Bill last October without believing it, just good for the electoral campaign. But is it really so? Reading Johnson's speech, two key points can be found that provide a different interpretation: the first concerns the integrity of the Kingdom, the second the idea of Brexit that Johnson has repeatedly promoted and continues to research.

The crux of the matter remains the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland, with the latter destined to act as an antechamber between the British and EU markets. Finding itself in an awkward position, with an "arm tied to the back", recalls the prime minister, London had granted ground on some aspects, especially on the possibility of Northern Ireland to remain aligned with European laws for at least four years and allowing the local assembly to choose whether to extend this status at the expiry of the terms, in order also to guarantee tranquility to a "hot" border and reconciled only with the Good Friday agreements of 1998.

With negotiations stalled to determine whether what will take place until 2020 will be a No deal Brexit or not, the European Union has applied the strategy adopted at the time of Theresa May's government, trying to instill fear in the counterpart, or hypothesizing to impose customs tariffs and prevent the transport of food products between Great Britain and Northern Ireland and thus admitting the existence of two different states. Divide et impera. Also in the face of the flare-up of Scottish independence pressures, Johnson smashed the cards, threatening to completely review the plans and bringing Brussels into the open: "By undermining the union of the nation, such an interpretation would seriously damage the peace and stability of Northern Ireland ".

Some reactions displaced by the Continent suggest that Johnson has hit the mark, while Johnson returned to office on Monday afternoon speaking to the Municipalities to justify the introduction of the disputed Internal Market Bill , a measure that aims to ensure that exchanges between the four nations (England , Wales, Scotland and, in fact, Northern Ireland) take place without customs barriers, therefore in open contrast with the European positions. "We cannot tolerate the EU trying to divide our country," he made clear in Westminster.

A single state, with no parts of it subject to European legislation, and not intent on waging war on strategic trading partners. The position of the conservative leader in this regard has always been clear, a mix between idealism and pragmatism: Johnson wants a peer agreement, but he knows that the scenario of a No Deal should not be totally excluded because the pacts are reached in two or not. sign. The ultimate goal is to build a new free trade relationship – London and Tokyo have just signed one -, without one party subjecting the other, born therefore on the basis of the principle of competition that should gratify the liberal pro-European souls who, on the contrary, they still chew bitter about the outcome of the 2016 referendum and whose hopes of a re-edition of the vote are miserably wrecked.

Johnson now has the task of maintaining order in his ranks to pass the Internal Market Bill , guaranteeing MPs the ability to vote on a case-by-case basis should a minister wish to use it. The European Union has to choose whether to carry out the original provisions of the Withdrawal Bill or to accept a separation without agreements with a nation that wants to preserve its territorial integrity. Not a small thing, in short. Certainly not the whim of a child premier.

The post Save the Union, Boris' reasons: integrity of the Kingdom and free trade appeared first on Atlantico Quotidiano .

This is a machine translation from Italian language of a post published on Atlantico Quotidiano at the URL on Tue, 15 Sep 2020 04:33:00 +0000.