The Telegraph says 2022 is the year the “reality needs to match the hype” on Brexit, five years after it backed an exit from the union.
Chief city commentator Ben Marlow said 12 full months since Britain “burst free from the shackles of Brussels” even some of the “most ardent Brexiteers are beginning to reluctantly concede that life outside the EU has yet to live up to its billing”.
Pointing to recent Brexit ‘wins’, including the return of the crown stamp on the side of pint glasses and removing the ban on selling in pounds and ounces, he said “it’s pretty weak stuff from the Downing Street spinners”.
“Perhaps all those parties are catching up with them. What has happened to all the big free trade deals that were promised? In their search for benefits, officials are scraping the bottom of the barrel with such fury that they have tunnelled through to the antipodes.”
Touching on free trade deals, Marlow said the so-called “landmark” agreements with Australia and New Zealand were damp squibs, and nothing has come of deals with the US or on entry to theComprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.
“But it’s not just that the benefits of Brexit have so far proved elusive,” he added. “It’s worse than that. The initial impact, from chaos with customs checks and a heavy blow to business investment has been almost overwhelmingly negative – and things could get a lot worse.”
Marlow concluded that “voters aren’t mugs” and that Boris Johnson’s government could be on borrowed time if it fails to deliver on its promises this year.
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