Category: business

Brexit 2016

Julia Chodor Chodorowska
Mini Morris painted with a British flag. Photo: Julia Chodor


When I listen about Brexit, I always laugh how tricky the history is. Brits had commonwealth outside their island for so long. Now they have commonwealth inside their island.

On June 23rd, British will decide if they want to leave the EU hoping that this will save them from:

– lack of sovereignty,

– introduction of new stupid laws, like carrots are fruits and snails are fish,

– immigration,

– abuse of benefits.

I am afraid they are wrong. Leaving the EU structure will not help Brits in any of that issues.

I am afraid the Brits do not realize in what world they live in.

Any international treaty the UK signs will limit its sovereignty. Staying within EU structure, where the UK is still strong, gives it better negotiation position.

In other words, under the EU the UK have to accept some stupid laws, but without the EU the UK will be forced to implement even worst laws as it will have weaker negotiation position.

Leaving the EU will not protect the UK from refugees and immigrants. The UK will be forced to take refugees under the international law anyway. The immigration will not stop. All the migrants that are already in the UK will stay there. And right now, just before the referendum, there is a great influx of new migrants. People wants to be in the UK before the boards will be closed so they can stay there legally.

Abuse of benefits – as far as reports shows in 2014, 4.9 million (92.6%) working-age benefit claimants were British while only 131,000 (2.5%) were EU nationals. The number of recipients from outside of the UK — but not from the EU — was 264,000 (5%). Tax credits – 3.9 million (84.8%) families receiving the benefits were British citizens, 302,000 (6.4%) were EU citizens and 413,000 (8.8%) were from outside of the UK. I guess Brits should think over it and stop lament. Leaving the EU will not change these numbers all of the sudden.

Leaving the EU will not really change any of the above, but for sure, will hurt the average British. Why?

– He will not be able to move freely around EU.

– He will not be able to buy a house in Portugal as he used to. He will need special permits.

– His driving license will not be accepted – will need the international one.

– British students studying abroad, will not be able to work.

– British students will have to pay more for studies.

– The prices in stores will rise as duties and taxes will be applied to all products from EU.

– Britsh companies will be less competitive on the European market, again, because of the duties and taxes they will have to add their prices. This means a drop in income, in production, and layoffs.

– And the last but not least Brits will be stuck with their old cars because Poles will not buy them anymore. Extra duties and taxes will apply. The prices of used cars will drop.

Again, when people should unite to fight systems and new stupid laws, instead, they choose to fight each other over benefits abuse that does not really exist.


Julia Chodor Chodorowska
Photo: Julia Chodor

Few days ago I read about British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond visit in Saudi Arabia.

He said few interesting things. First that the UK stood ready to cooperate with Saudi Arabia to carry out the plans outlined in the Vision 2030.

“We see a number of areas in which the UK could play a strong supportive role,” he said. “We have probably the world’s best capital markets in London and as companies are privatized or partly privatized or new projects and public-private partnerships are launched, London can play a crucial role, both in terms of restructuring and financing those entities.”

He also said Britain had considerable experience in educational reform. “And educational reform will be at the center of delivering Vision 2030.”

So generous, I felt like to throw up. Why? Let’s have a look from the historical perspective.

Are Britsh so generous people? In my opinion, they are one of the cruelest nations. Let’s start with child migration. “Between 1618 and 1967 probably around 150,000 children were sent overseas to begin new lives in British colonies. Child migration to the colonies was consistently presented as an appropriate method of coping with the large numbers of unsocialised, undisciplined, neglected or orphaned children, and those who were simply the children of the poor, crammed into British towns and cities. Britain is the only country in the world with a sustained history of child migration. Only Britain has used child migration as a key part of its child care strategy over four centuries.”

Another group that was sent to colonies is prisoners.

The second thing is the conquest of territories that are today’s the US. You do not have to read much, just open your eyes to figure out which conquest was crueler – British or a Spanish and Portuguese. At the end in South America people mixed and are called Latinos now. There are still wild tribes there. While in the US, the majority is white and do not really mix with any other „race”.

Next chapter is slavery – but let be fair. Birts did not invent it. They were among the others nations. I am just afraid they are the most famous slave traders.

The last thing that comes to my mind are the concentrate camps organized by the Brits during the  Second Boer War (1899–1902). Again, they were not the first ones. According to the historian Władysław Konopczyński, Russians established concentrate camps for Polish people during the Bar Confederation rebellion (1768–1772). But Brits had to try this one too.

So yes, in my opinion, Brits are not generous people at all – but one thing is true, they have good PR and good music.

So back to Mr. Philip Hammond visit in Saudi Arabia. When I read about the UK being ready to help Saudis, I just wonder what the catch is.

The sentence “Even if the oil prices were to recover, it makes immense sense to diversify the economy in order to ensure resilience” worries me.

Why? British Petroleum (BP) few decades ago was sucking out the oil from the Middle East almost without paying. Are they willing to do this again? The Saudi government will focus on budget income diversification and BP will steal oil industry again.

This is why when I hear Brits speaking about oil, help in privatization and the world’s best capital markets in London – well it does ring a bell in my head.