The UK voted to leave the European Union (EU) in 2016 and officially left the union in January 2020, but a trade deal was not finalised.
Verdict has conducted a poll to assess the best outcome of Brexit considering the current political climate.
A majority 34% of the poll respondents opined the UK would adopt a model similar to that adopted by other countries, while an equal percentage of respondents expected a no Brexit deal.
While 14% of the respondents opined that the UK would adopt a Canada model with partial alignment to the EU Customs Union under a ‘bespoke deal’, 10% voted for the UK adopting the Norway model with full alignment to the EU Customs Union and paid membership of the single market, including freedom of movement.
Further, 6% and 4% of the respondents respectively voted that the UK would adopt a Switzerland model with full alignment to the EU Customs Union and paid membership of the European Free Trade Association and Turkey model with full alignment to the EU Customs Union through a bilateral agreement.
Another 34% of the respondents voted for no Brexit expecting a reversal of the referendum result, while 20% voted for no deal Brexit, with the UK resorting to World Trade Organization rules and 12% were unsure.
The analysis is based on 483 responses received from the readers of Pharmaceutical Technology, a Verdict site, between 15 September 2020 and 04 January 2021.
Best outcome of Brexit
The UK and EU finally reached a trade deal on 24 December 2020 after months of negotiations. Until the trade deal was reached, there was speculation on whether the UK will exit without a trade deal or sign a new trade deal.
A no-deal Brexit would have severely impacted both the UK and EU, but more the former since the EU forms majority of the export market for the country. Economists had already forecast that Brexit itself could lead to increased costs and regulatory challenges.
The new trade deal signed between the UK and the EU ensures tariff-free and quota-free treatment, but exporters from the UK are expected to face new regulatory hurdles. Exporters are expected to face increasing costs and tough market conditions to do business in Europe.
The UK and Europe, however, have agreed on shared rules for workers’ rights apart from social and environmental regulations to ensure that either side does not have an unfair advantage.