30 Mar 16

Brexit - not good news either way

In June, the British have to decide whether they will stay in the European Union or not. It threatens to become a neck-and-neck race, while the pro’s and con’s seem evenly matched. But some observers fear that the outcome of the referendum will in the end be of no importance. The British have, as far as Europe is concerned, no choice anymore, because both within the scenario of staying and within that of leaving the islanders will actually be punished.

In the first option the British remain in Europe and at first hand it seems that nothing is changed. The United Kingdom will quickly find out, however, that the EU is no paradise anymore. Currently Europe is not much more than a big mess. And so the British will get stuck in a hole with few future prospects to offer. In addition, the inhabitants of London and other British cities and towns will fear that they have to live in a world that is controlled by Brussels. And that is, in the eye of the average Brit, not a welcome idea.

In the second option the United Kingdom leaves the European Union and that will be a final departure. Because once goodbye is said to the EU, there will be no more room for return. However, the question is not just whether a Brexit will be a disaster for the United Kingdom itself, but also whether Europe will be able to survive without the British. Because a Brexit just might become the catalyst that leads to the break-up of the European Union.

What does the outside world think of this? There certainly is no question of much optimism. The famous billionaire George Soros warned recently that Europe is on the brink of the abyss. According to Dr. Nouriel Roubini, the well-known American economist who is also known as Dr. Doom, the disintegration of the EU constitutes the most important threat we face in 2016. Or, in loud and clear terms: with or without Brexit, the outcome is financial, economic and political chaos. So the British have little reason to look to the future with great confidence. And the auto sector could also be hit hard by a possible Brexit, because a world full of chaos is not positive for auto sales. Eventually the entire European car industry could experience difficult times and that at a moment when the sector is facing large investments to cope with the coming of new technologies like the electric vehicles and the self-driving car.

Authored by: Tim Harrup