Even as the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier stressed the bloc’s willingness to compromise to reach a deal with London, Boris Johnson’s earlier insistence on letting his country crash out of the EU still seems like the most probable option.
If Johnson sticks to his words, the decision will sow chaos through the delicate supply chains that stretch across Britain, the EU and beyond, just as the economic hit from the COVID-19 pandemic worsens.
With the end of the year quickly approaching, the British government has shown little interest in reaching a deal, apparently favouring a so-called ”Australian deal” instead, which would see the UK trade with other European countries on World Trade Organization terms. This would mean increased tariffs on almost all imported goods and significant price hikes for the ordinary consumer, as well as uncertainty regarding the pound.
These adverse effects are more than likely to extend to a crucially important segment of the British economy – the housing sector. The uncertainty surrounding Brexit was taking its toll on British real estate even before the onset of Covid-19 and the most recent economic crisis, especially in London, where property transactions slumped by 20% in 2018 compared to a year earlier and average property values fell £11,000.
By Simon Lambert, please read the full article on The Brussels Times.