With the US Presidential election looming, tensions are high. The country is divided, driven by the COVID pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement. One could be forgiven for assuming this election is the most important in most of our lifetimes.
But across the pond in the United Kingdom, the Presidential elections will affect us this year potentially more than ever. Polls are pointing towards a landslide win for Biden.
One of the arguments thrown by the Brexit campaign was the ability to strike a tailor-made, top-notch free trade agreement (FTA), which will allow us to penetrate the lucrative American market with heavily reduced tariffs.
It was a bit of a relief to hear President Trump will have an FTA with the UK as a top priority, after hearing his predecessor Obama tell the world that we would be at the “back of the queue”. Even to the point that Vice President Pence reached out to the former Taoiseach of the Republic of Ireland, Leo Varadkar, to ask for flexibility in the UK-EU negotiations. But 4 years have gone by incredibly quickly, and another election is imminent.
Biden has come out on record to condemn the decision the UK took to introduce the Internal Market Bill (IMB), aimed at protecting our precious union’s internal trade. Biden has taken the view that the IMB will damage the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland, but anyone who has even taken a brief read through the IMB can see that this is not the case.
As the UK embarks upon a new path, new trading agreements are critical in achieving the fruits of Brexit. We have already signed, in principle, a deep free trade agreement with Japan, but it could be argued that the Anglosphere is more important than the rest of the world due to the shared language, family connections and deep historical ties. CANZUK (Canada, Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom) is in its early stages of being discussed as a trading bloc, but a US FTA will serve as a leg up in the prosperity of the United Kingdom that the EU has evidently failed to work towards.
I believe the best thing for the UK would be to have Trump return for a second term. An FTA can get smashed out while simultaneously protecting our food standards, farmers and the NHS. I have a feeling the EU is hoping for the opposite…