Could TTIP Discourage Brexit?
Three years ago, during the G-8 Summit, British Prime Minister David Cameron called TTIP a "once-in-a-generation prize". Today, the negotiation of the TTIP is being called into question by the British referendum and a potential Brexit from the EU. The main question is whether Britain could allow itself to lose its trade competitiveness by exiting the common European market at a time when domestic economic growth rates are in decline?
Trade and investment patterns Complete elimination of tariffs is one of the pillars of TTIP. Currently, transatlantic trade tariffs are very low, at 4 percent on weighted average with the exception of a few highly regulated sectors such as textiles, motor vehicles and agriculture. Peak tariffs in these areas reach 87 to 350 percent.
When global trading patterns are examined, the US remains a crucial market for the EU. The US represents the main trading partner for Europeans, representing 15.3 percent of its total trade. Moreover, the US absorbs 18 percent of all EU exports.
North America is the biggest export destination for British products, being the second largest exporter inside the EU to the US. With a successful TTIP, the size of the gains for Britain, as one of the main trading partners of the US, would translate into billions of dollars of savings for companies and consumers.
Professor Valbona Zeneli is Program Director, Black Sea and Eurasia at the College of International and Security Studies, George C. Marshall Center - Garmisch, Germany. The views presented are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of Department of Defense, and of the U.S. or German governments.
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